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Bits and bobs about my life in my lovely home, Thatchwick Cottage, Pretoria, South Africa.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Wednesday, 5 March: Is it spring in North Dakota?

Is it spring yet in North Dakota? I don't suppose so. Winter comes early; spring late. The pic above is the street in front of 'my' house taken in March, 1970 when I spent a memorable year as an American Field Student from sunny South Africa in Rugby, North Dakota. I attended Rugby High School, had an adopted mom and dad (the bestest), an adopted sister and kid brother. Did I have a jolly good time!

I delighted in my first snow just before Christmas, which swirled like white butterflies through the air. With only experience of hail storms, I expected snow to fall in solid lumps, something like a mini-snowball fight. The snow was magical but by March the magic had worn a little thin. I had a serious case of cabin fever. My daily walks to the local library through knee deep snow and 40F below temperatures were no longer fun. The librarian, a lovely lady called Florence, used to comfort me with her stories of nostalgia for poinsettias and bougainvillea blossoms. She hailed from California. My 'mum' tried to encourage me to cope by fantasizing about my favourite novel and all time favourite movie, 'Dr Zhivago'. At first imagining myself to be Lara-a-la-Julie Christie, wrapped in furs and waiting to meet her destiny in a white wonderland worked. By early May when the big melt down began, I didn't want to hear a word about Dr Zhivago and the Siberian steppes.

Here at Thatchwick it is the beginning of autumn. But more about that in another blog. In the meantime, if there are any North Dakotan bloggers out there: is it spring yet?


Carrie said...

Well, I don't know about other states, but here in central Massachusetts, there is still snow to be seen. However,the ground is very wet from much rain and melting snow. Spring must not be far off. I can hardly wait to see my bulb flowers poking through the soil.

Denise said...

What a pleasure to visit your cheery little blog this morning! Many pleasant memories were revived as I read entry after entry. I spent five years of my life in Lesotho when my parents were missionaries there fro 1976-1981. A lot of things have changed there, I hear, but I will always have a special place in my heart for the dear people of South Africa. I do have a neighbor who's from there and it's so delightful to catch up with her every now and then - especially after one of their frequent visits "home".

Janet said...

ad an AFS student from South Africa in South Burlington Vermont (where spring also comes late) in 1969 or maybe 1970. Her name was Jean Storey. She always seemed so exotic :)


rockinrelics said...

I stumbled onto your blog tonight and love the beautiful pictures! I recognized this street in Rugby, ND as it is not far from my own street. Of course it has changed some in the past 38 years! I have lived in Rugby nearly 20 years now and the winters do seem endless! Just when you think it is over, you enjoy some sunny melting days... and then you get socked again with subzero or snowy weather!
Earlier in the week I raked out part of one of my flowerbeds, the snow being almost completely gone from it but still coating my lawn, then the next day it was cold again and 2 days with snow. Doesn't look very Easter like!

The rule here is don't plant flowers before Memorial Day (the end of May) or they are likely to freeze! Some years we are lulled into believing it is ok by a stretch of 80 degree weather, but it often will freeze or snow after a few days!
Bonnie B