Springing Forward
Brian Campbell

Spring in Manitoba.  What an interesting concept.  When does spring really begin in Manitoba? March 21st when the official first day of spring is recognized? Or is it April? May? Later?  In a province which has seen snow in virtually every month of the year at one time or another, it is hard to be sure when spring actually begins.  One thing we can usually count of is that Mother Nature doesn’t let us move on to spring until we have one final big snowstorm.  Or two. Maybe three.

Of course, this winter has been undoubtedly the most unusual, maybe not in recorded history, but at least to my best recollection. For those who were away, or may have a bad memory, here is a brief summary. First, summer disappeared overnight the beginning of September, as temperatures dropped dramatically.  Then it warmed back up in October.  The latter part of October, all of November and the early part of December acted like a British Columbia winter, cool and rainy, with the occasional sunny day. Somewhere around the middle of December, Mother Nature woke up and realized, I’m way behind, and the temperature dropped 20 degrees literally overnight.  This was followed by an entire winter’s worth of snow in under two weeks. Then, in January, it all started to melt away.  Then there were a couple more big storms. The temperature dropped; it came back up; then plunged again; then rose again.

That brings us to now, the end of March, officially the beginning of spring, with the weather looking like it is really here.  But is it? Really?

This year we behaved like many Manitobans and ran away to Mexico in early March.  The irony of doing it this year is, even though we were only gone a week, somehow we managed to leave in spring and return in winter.  On March fifth, when we left, it was melting, it was actually colder in Toronto than in Winnipeg.  One week later, we returned to minus 15 with a windchill of minus 29.   Mother Nature is cruel.

We attempted to stay in Mexico and join the entertainment team at the resort.  The entertainment team would have accepted us.  Unfortunately, they don’t make the final decisions.  We were even willing to work for room and board.  Oh well, it was worth a try.

But here we are, back in Manitoba, where the last blast of winter only lasted two weeks past our return and we are apparently breezing into spring now.
I’m good with that, if it happens to be true. But is it really here to stay