Monday, March 29, 2010

Spring Unsprung

For a fleeting moment, it seemed spring had triumphantly sprung on the island of Manhattan and on the official first day of the season, no less. My colorless cheeks felt, for the first time in months, the warmth of burning sunshine, resulting in the tiniest hint of rose on my face.  For a moment, the warmth inspired me to hope! 
  • To hope that the bitter cold weather and ice and sleet and snow was over for the year. 
  • To hope that our newly decorated porch would soon be put to nightly BBQ use. 
  • To hope that I might have developed a green thumb.
  • To hope that buying an inflatable pool to use as a hot tub in our atrium was not a harebrained, misguided idea.
For two glorious days, the pleasant weather took away my winter scowl. Steaks were grilled on the freshly cleaned and remodeled patio, fragrant yellow violas were potted into window planters,  and cucumber, broccoli and bean seeds were planted into a cute little greenhouse we bought at Home Depot.
My inner pessimist was still at work though, compelling me to warn Jorel that we probably shouldn’t plant everything so early because winter couldn’t possibly be over. I heard sensible New Yorker Angie say, “You don’t understand, Jorel. This weather won’t last. We have at least two more months of cold. This is just a fluke!”

That sunshine beating down on my head at the Home Depot garden center was too powerful to resist though, and ultimately I gave in to the flowers... and the vegetables... and the herbs. For someone who has resisted gardening in all its forms over the years, it amazes me that a few days of 70 degree weather somehow convinced me to dive in head first to about 20 lbs of potting soil. I am my father’s daughter?
Flowers are one thing, but a hot tub? In the apartment? Before engineer Jorel moved in, I’d never had the manpower or knowledge to execute any of my ideas for our useless atrium. (Rejected ideas: A. get a monkey; B. seal and fill with water and fish for a giant in-house aquarium; C. fill with water during freezing temperatures to create home ice-skating rink, etc.)

Standing on the pool toy aisle at Target in Secaucus, Jorel held out a box with an 8x8 inflatable pool in it. He’d figured out all the logistics… how to inflate it, how to fill it, how to keep it warm, how to drain it, how to maintain it. If he had a tail, it would have been wagging vigorously like a pup begging to be adopted. How could I say no?

Jorel’s lady friend Megan and Lauren came over for dinner that night, and Jorel and I proudly showed off the newly decorated patio, its pretty potted flowers and la pièce de résistance – the hot tub in the atrium (heretofore to be known as The Grotto.) 
View of The Grotto from the porch above

At first, Lauren was skeptical. I couldn’t help but laugh when she said, “You have weird ideas all the time – that’s not surprising. What blows my mind is that you finally found someone to execute them!”
Two hours after we hopped in for the hot tub’s maiden voyage, even Lauren agreed that it was truly the best idea ever.
On cue, the weather switched back to heinous first thing on Monday morning. We brought the newly potted plants in the house and tipped the hot tub on its side where it’s waiting for the next warm day. So spring hasn’t exactly sprung outside… however, inside Apt. 1E, we’ve got it going on.

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