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Spring, Or Something Like It
The inescapably joyful feeling of stepping outside to room temperature on a New York City evening
After such a long winter, which for me, went by excruciatingly slow, I am now living in spring, something I have been fantasizing about since the holiday season ended. January-March is a long stretch of bleakness in the city of New York. The days are short and it’s too uncomfortable to wander around aimlessly, one of my top activities in this grand city, unless you have Uniqlo heat tech on and a balaclava. This means only venturing out when one has to, and if you are like me, you will come up with excuses not to venture out, and then you will be inside too much, and you will start to feel the effects of isolation, which were exasperated by covid, and to which feeling of utter aloneness you never want to go back to, so you panic and go outside anyways, and your eyes will water and the wind will whip relentlessly in your face, and the sun goes down at 4:30 anyways, so you go back to your apartment, climb onto your couch and under a fuzzy blanket and say to yourself, “well maybe we are supposed to hibernate and stay indoors more during this kind of weather”. Repeat process the next day and every day.
Until March/April. The beginning of spring began to show herself in all types of ways, but most exciting are the trees. Below.. a light timeline of texts I sent my friend who is out of town for the spring, whom I am documenting the brilliance of NYC spring for.
I never want to take these buds, these colors, these new growths, for granted. Since the beginning of March, each time I go on my morning walk, I’ve noticed a new growth, clashes of colors coming together. I gasp and smile and think, How Beautiful, this is all I’ve wanted, it’s here. But it’s not warm enough. I want summer now.
I am a summer baby. I love heat. My favorite months in New York City are June-August. I love how the heat makes us slow down. I love the thunderstorms. I love the hydrangeas, so big and wild. I love the deep green of the city parks. I love the lack of clothes required, I love how long the days are, how you can leave at 8am and not get home until 2am. I love the way dresses cling to the skin through sweat and how we are all sweating together. I love how the heat makes everything feel more sensuous. NYC truly feels like a jungle then and I just love it.
Last night, for the first time since probably September 2021, I stepped outside my apartment to find the outdoor temperature the same temperature as it was inside, meaning, we are now at the time of year in certain parts of the North East, where you might not always need a jacket, or when you do have one, because that’s always a good idea, you may get hot and take it off. Pretty soon, we won’t think twice before stepping outside without a jacket. We will be in the hot trenches of July, and the thought of a jacket, or anything for that matter, touching our skin will make beads of sweat gather and drop off our noses, we will become angry at the thought of more material on our skin.
I stepped outside, and walked the block to get my chicken tenders and fries. Everyone was out, walking around and going off to dinners, dates, parties, home from work. I was in my sweats, coming off battling a cold and just wanting to get my food and return home to rest. But I caught some joy, the warmth of the air, the spring in people’s step, the noise level of more people eating outside. Summer is coming, she’s on her way.
But for now, we are in the sweet in between, the light jacket weather, the “I can let my ankles show again” weather, the “I can pack away my heat tech now” weather. It is so sweet. And I want to appreciate it, instead of wishing for June. Because it’ll come. In just 5 weeks. Spring is so short, and in just 5 months, I’ll be wishing for it again, because with another spring, comes another summer, and so on.