Saturday, October 31, 2015

Four Seasons of Minnesota

The trees are on fire, this time of year in Minnesota. It's almost a ritual to drive far & wide, to places with sweeping views of colorful trees, click picture and then post it on FB :)

People crib about MN winter, but everyone loves that MN has 4 seasons. Each season change is so  tangibly different, its a verifiable phenomenon every year. I tried to capture it by clicking a tree outside our balcony, at different times of the year. Its not a flawless time-lapse sequence. I changed phones and lost some of the pictures. These 4 do capture, how it is in different Quarters of the year.

Snow makes the winter more beautiful and more bearable. It's all quite and cinematic, while it's snowing, even during a Snow-storm. Night sky lights up from all the refraction's from city-lights. Street lamps glows and the orange light on mounds of white snow fallen on the land, is something which never stops being peaceful. All of this from the safety of your house. It does not feel cold, while its actually snowing. Like each flake is absorbing all the cold (which I know is not scientifically possible). The killer cold comes later, when every surface is frozen and out to get to your bones.
Minnesota Spring is legendary. Officially, its after Groundhog day. But we still have leftover snow after that. It's this way from March to June. Once the snow melts away, its Rain time.  One week of rains, and there are leaf bud sprouting everywhere. All lawns turn from white to Green. And flower plants in every lawn and campus.
Technically Summer is from June to September. But it start the exact moment you realize, that you don't need jacket, gloves, hat & muffler anymore. You can throw away the heavy boot and switch to sandals. That's when you know, yes its summer. These are pleasant months, with maybe few days of 100F. This year maybe 2 days were 100F and rest were all in 70F to 80F.  There hasn't been a week when it did not rain, this year.
Beginning of Fall is usually such a beautiful sight. In Sept-Oct, all trees are colorful with dark greens, yellow, pink, maroons and browns. We can't get enough of those sights. Pictures cannot capture the beauty of Minnesota Fall. You don't have to travel far to see it. Any evening at any lakeside or park, and we can see unbelievable range of colors. This tree did not change color. Leaves just dried & fell off. Trees with empty dried stick branches are a usual sight after the colors fall of.
 And finally, a bearable sunny winter again. All year round, we dread the coming winter. But it lasts only 3 months. Initial few years, we forget to enjoy rest of the seasons, because of this dread. What we actually fear is the after-office return, to a frozen car seat - from being parked outside in 20F or lower. The frozen steering wheel cuts through your fingers. Those 10 minutes till car warms up, just resets everything you know. With the increasing thermostat, all is forgotten. And then we are back to the cycle of seasons.

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