Officially, we hit spring at 7:44 a.m. on Friday morning, but you wouldn't have known it in Vermont this weekend. I went up to Sugarbush with my college friends, Karen, Co & Meg and while we had a fantastic, 40-degree sunburner on the slopes yesterday, we woke up to two inches of fluffy white stuff this morning. Thankfully, it was clear and dry here in Boston when I got home today. The first day of spring on the farm meant 30-degree temps and a bright, clear day. When I got to the shop Friday morning, I met up with A2 and our new comrade, Claudio, and then grabbed a ride down to the water with Skip. Along the way, we chatted about how things were going so far (good but physically grueling) and started to get into his own personal connection to the seasons. He said a friend once told him that he was more in tune with the seasons than anyone else she'd known. And he agreed.
"A few days ago, when we were out on the tide, I thought to myself, 'I bet the sea worms will be out right now,' and sure enough we got out there and there they were," he said. "I guess I'm just used to the way these things work."
You can feel that connection all over the farm, actually. Everyone seems to be in tune with how fast or slow the thermometer's moving. Every time a grower pops by the float or backs their truck up to the shop to drop off bags, they talk about the weather. They tell me that March is the worst month because of the fluctuating temperatures. But then last week, Christian Horne tossed out the fact that April can be brutal and rainy. And every day, someone asks us when the float is going back into the water. While we'd love to be out there now, it's still just a little too early -- and cold -- to get it out there yet. Every conversation, all day long, goes back to the weather. It controls every part of what we do. And absolutely everyone stresses that it's only going to get better. Like Berg told me on my first day of work: "In the summertime, this is the best job in the world."
As for me, I've only ever watched the seasons change from the comfort of a desk chair. I'm used to watching buds appear out of nowhere in May and then get miffed when it all ends up on the ground come October. And while I've always been aware of when it's getting warmer or lighter, I've never felt more controlled by what the weather is doing than I am these days. From what layers I put on in the morning to whether or not we wash and bag indoors, it's all I think about during the day. And, much to my surprise, I'm perfectly happy with that. Since I'm guessing the only constant in my life will be the changing weather, I'd better get used to it. And appreciate days like last Wednesday, when I could actually shed a few layers and enjoy that extra little bit of sunlight.
I'm also guessing I'll get used to the new happy hour. No, not the one that took place at Frankie D's at 4 p.m. on Friday (though it was a stellar display of suits-boots camaraderie). I'm talking about the one that took place when I got home. After a hot shower, a glass of Kentucky bourbon and one single oyster, I was as relaxed as I think I'll ever be.