The Great Cherry Blossom Watch

Photo Courtesy of Susanna Shull

I’ll admit it: The cherry blossoms blindsided me. I knew one of these days they would show up, but not when or where or how or why. One day, they weren’t here and then the next, there were all these pink + white trees everywhere. Now that they’ve arrived, I’ve been staking out in the bushes with the binoculars to see every petal fall in the Cherry Blossom Watch 2022.

It was a tumultuous first week for the trees, having battled rain, wind and thunder all of last weekend, but it seems like they’ve fought through it and have held onto most of their petals. For some additional info on cherry blossoms, I looked to the Washington, D.C., cherry blossom website. Theirs bloomed a few weeks before ours, and their description of their Cherry Blossom Watch 2022 is more dramatic than anything I have ever written. “It was not all smooth sailing,” the website reads. “A deep freeze on March 14 killed off the saucer magnolias, although it left the cherry blossoms untouched. Another freeze on March 28, when the cherry blossoms were still in bloom, did some damage to the cherry blossoms, but not as much as might have been feared.” Poor saucer magnolias. They deserved better.   

On an unrelated note, if you haven’t been following my mulch paranoia these past few weeks, I’ll sum up the situation very quickly. I’m concerned that these far-reaching mounds of mulch appearing around campus will eventually grow to cover the entire campus until we eventually change our name to Mulch University and become a college for geese.  

I’m going to address that story once again this week and I’m gonna start by saying sometimes we do things that we regret. Sometimes we compromise our morals when we shouldn’t. I’m no saint. This past week at the greenhouse I was asked to spread out a pile of mulch behind the College Center. And I complied. I pushed that mulch out to every corner of the flower bed. I am deeply sorry to anyone that I have disappointed this week, and I hope that I can be better in the future. All my morals just seem to vanish in the presence of that crisp $13.20 an hour.

Saturday afternoon, I suspended my cherry blossom watch to do a different kind of watching. My roommate and I took a trip across the vehicular divide to finally see those Vassar baseballers do their thing. As we were walking by the home run fence, I caught sight of a big bird roaming the sky. Could it be the America bird? Right before our American game? The bald eagle was flapping its wings, almost as if to say, “Play the baseball.” How perfect. Once we sat down, we quickly learned that we didn’t actually get there at the start of the ball game like we thought (whoops). It was the fourth inning, and we were already down by three runs. We didn’t have time to stay for the whole game, but while we were there, Vassar scored once and one of the Skidmore outfielders accidentally threw a ball right into his pitcher’s face, which was really funny. Other than that, though, not much happened. We said goodbye to the baseball dogs we had met and left after the seventh inning. 

I was battling the harsh weather the rest of that day. They say that the month of March comes “in like a lion and out like a lamb,” but I guess the whole lamb thing goes out the window once April starts. I was curious what sort of fun things they say about the month of April besides the “April showers” line, so I found myself in the “April weather lore” section of the Farmer’s Almanac website. I learned some valuable wisdom there, such as “a cold and moist April fills the cellar and fattens the cow.” Just remember that the next time you complain about the weather this month. Think about the cow. 

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