A Good Home, Canadian Gardens, Canadian Identity, Canadian winter, Flowering trees and shrubs, Humour

Ice, Cold and … Flowers?

Never have Canadians been so united in one complaint.

Our northern nation, collectively, is shocked and appalled by this winter.

There’s been a surfeit of weeping, wailing and gnashing of teeth. And a wealth of dire prognostications as one cold-weather record is outdone by the next.

Blog Photo - Snowy path

The most popular refrain this winter: “I’m not budging. I’m staying home.”

Second most popular: “Can’t talk right now! Strapping on my snowshoes to put out the garbage!”

We’ve become a nation of winter wimps. Yes, the hardy northern folk you’ve read about in books and seen in tourism commercials and airplane videos are no more. Gone, like the dodo bird.

That being the case, I imagine that there are robots running our schools and hospitals, driving our buses and subway trains, sanding our sidewalks, managing our electrical and gas supply and  keeping our neighborhoods safe and protected. Someone has to be brave enough.

Blog Photo - Spring Cherry trees blooming

In the midst of this alarming breakdown in our national character, my friend Jean sent me photos of flowering cherry trees and rhododendrons and azaleas.

You’d never believe where they are from.

Give up?

The west coast. Vancouver. Canada.


Blog Photo - Spring Rodos Blooming

Scenes like these tend to cause a serious breach in relations between east coast and west coast Canadians. How can one part of Canada be enjoying bloomin’ trees and shrubs in February, while the rest of us are freezin’ our tails off? It hardly seems fair.

But I, for one, am thrilled. Thrilled that one small part of this country is blooming.

Blog Photo - Spring Rodos2

And grateful for friends who send pictorial reminders that spring does indeed follow winter. Yes, even here in the ‘frozen tundra’ of Ontario.

Thank you, Jean. 

43 thoughts on “Ice, Cold and … Flowers?”

  1. Golly, such bennies Jean receives, being near the moderating influence of an ocean! I have been thinking myself lately about how far I have drifted from the Gulf of Mexico. Thanks for the photos, Jean and Cynthia.

  2. I’m sorry its so cold Cynthia, that sounds a miserable way to spend winter, extremely hard too on folk without adequate heating. I hope you are keeping warm though, getting around can’t be easy either.

  3. Fun post and wordplay Cynthia. You sound like a true hardcore northerner, talking about the wimps, wailing and whining! And I admire your good attitude about the contrast of cold and warm in different parts of Canada.
    hugs and snow blessings, 🙂

  4. Thanks for the smile and the promise of Spring! You are promising Spring, aren’t you? 🙂 Otherwise those robots will take over everything! Yes, I’m tired of winter but not letting it get me down..here’s to running, hiking and snow shoeing!

  5. I am feeling compelled to post some Florida photos to make everyone feel warmer. The pictures are making me cold!

    Wishing you an early spring and thanks for sharing the West Coast photos, I want to go to Vancouver now.

  6. Got a chuckle over your snow pix and local “refrains”. Vancouver gets that lovely warm air circling across there from Japan? It looks very lush.
    Waaaay south of you in TX by the coast, we have the early blooming trees – the redbuds and pears – showing color…in the fog and rain and 30’s(F). Hang on!

  7. Oh Cynthia, it must be so hard to keep hunkering down and coping with the persistent snow and icy conditions. But I love your friend Jean for sending you such gorgeous pictures of hope and beauty from the world of nature. It is a miracle to think that it is all there, just waiting for you underneath that blanket of snow.

    1. What a lovely way of seeing the situation, Karen. I shall try to remember that, every time I look out my window!
      Yes, Jean is a very kind and thoughtful person to send us those flowers.

  8. Hi Cynthia, This has also been my favorite refrain this Winter in New England – “I’m not budging. I’m staying home.” Unless I have to go out see my clients/patients. Cabin fever is a real issue but I have more than enough to keep me busy indoors. Thank you for the flowers…a reminder of the lovely Spring we will soon enjoy!!!

  9. How hard life is for all you snowbound Canadians (and Americans too) The flowers are really lovely but I also like your snow picture! We had 10 degrees Centigrade today and some sunshine after early rain. I opened the car windows and drove with fresh air blowing into the car. This is just to make you jealous.

  10. I love these flowers, Cynthia, and your post gave me a good chuckle. 😀 As I write this, the snow is coming down fast and furious here in North Carolina, southeastern U.S. The weather people have predicted five to eight inches for us tonight. Once it started this evening, it covered our grass and sidewalks in no time flat. I’ve decided that it has been a strange winter for everyone on the east coast this year, from Florida to Canada, and I know you guys in Canada and in New England have really had a hard time. It is indeed nice to be reminded that spring will be here, hopefully sooner rather than later. 🙂

    Take care!


    1. Yikes! That’s a lot of snow at once, Denise. We’re used to it here, but that’s a lot for you. Yes, it’s been a strange winter this year – last year we had the ice storm and snow on the ground for four months, so this year we were hoping it would be better. and it is better than the ice storm, but gee wiz it’s cold!

      Stay warm, Denise.

  11. Beautiful blossoms, Cynthia. Nice to see that someone is having spring.I’m not sure if people are less study and stoic these days or we’re just in the habit of complaining. In the past people were raised to resist complaining. Now we let it all hang out. In this part of the US we would normally be barreling fast into spring this time of year, but there’s no sign of spring in sight, so we shall patiently wait. Complaining won’t help, so I’ve decided to embrace our frozen wonderland. I was in your area several years ago in March and it was still cold with lingering spots of snow, I drove back through Michigan and into Ohio. It was like going from a black and white photo to color. But I loved that part of Canada. Wish I could return someday. Perhaps in summer this time. 🙂

    1. I think we are indeed less sturdy and stoic and quicker to complain. when the summer comes, I shall heartily complain about mosquitoes, for example. And earwigs and slugs eating my hosta leaves. Canada’s national pastime is complaining about the weather; I suspect earlier generations had bigger problems to worry about.

  12. Well, I’ll stop complaining about our Irish weather, after reading your post. Actually we had a sunny St Patrick’s Day this year, which is very unusual, so most of us are quite happy with our weather here in Ireland these days.

    1. Yup – climate change alright. The days when most Irish people are happy with their weather, and everyone else is complaining… (smile) Wishing you a good day, Jean.

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