Either because of a lazy grade school teacher or while gulping down an ambiguous children’s book, I once grabbed onto the idea that the seasons occur in three-month increments beginning on the first day of the month. Summer is June, July, and August; fall is September, October, and November; and winter and spring subsequently go on from there.
Only in summertime did Colorado live up to this notion, and as both school break and my birthday magically coincided with those three precious months of freedom, the rest of the seasons didn’t matter much. Fall lasted a few weeks, winter blew in sometime in October and stayed well into April, and spring eked out a few weeks on the other end.
But I believed that somewhere in the world there had to be a climate where the seasons settled obediently within those three-month parameters.
In Maine, while the four seasons don’t fall precisely on the solstices and equinoxes, they arrive rather fittingly on my childhood calendar.
Summer usually runs a little late, but the days are balmy and the nights full of mosquitoes by the first or second week in June. Labor Day accompanies cool breezes, drier air, and the first hints of maple foliage. All the leaves are on the ground by mid November and the snow tries its best to stay away until after we get them all raked up. Sometimes winter sticks its nose in earlier than anyone would like, but for the most part, fall stays as long as it’s supposed to. December, January, and February are cloaked in all manner of frozen precipitation, and while by my calendar, March should usher in springtime, that’s where Maine drops the ball. Spring is like the hung-over friend who wakes up at noon for an 8:00 a.m. coffee date. It stretches and crawls out of bed sometime in mid-April.
Grab the reins for the best ride of the year in New England.
Copyright © 2017 – Paulla Estes