Saturday, March 15, 2008

Hail, hail, the gang's all here!

At around two-thirty this afternoon, a severe thunderstorm suddenly covered our yard with hailstones the size of ice cubes. Golf balls. Fifty-cent pieces. Really. No pea-sized or nickel-sized stuff. This was the real deal. When the storm ended, I gathered up some of the hailstones and put them in little plastic baggies and saved them in the freezer. There must be a reason I saved the hail, but I have no idea what it is. It seemed like a good idea at the time.

I thought about the poor horses and cattle in the fields hereabouts just standing out there in the weather minding their own business when large, cold objects started falling out of the sky and hitting them. They must have been very surprised. And confused. At least we human beings have the weather channel on television and several local meteorologists who warn us (over and over and over and over) what is about to happen. We can take cover. Our animal friends can't. It doesn't seem fair.

Until the hailstorm, this had been the week of the Bradford pears. Well, that's not exactly true. There are Bartlett pears and Anjou pears and lots of other kinds of pears, I suppose, but there are no Bradford pears. None at all. Just Bradford pear trees. They don't produce fruit, just blossoms. These trees suddenly started appearing around here about twenty-five years ago. Landscapers were planting them everywhere--in office parks, in subdivisions, in shopping mall parking lots. They were apparently the "plant of the year" just as encore azaleas and knockout roses and stella d'oro lilies have been must-haves in other years. This week, the Bradford pear trees were in bloom. Everywhere I looked, I saw the delicate white blossoms in profusion. All too soon, the leaves will take over and the blossoms will be only a memory. Their stay is all too brief. But things are beautiful while the pear blossoms last, and they prepare us for the cherries and the redbuds and the dogwoods that can't be far behind.

So, yes, the whole gang was here today -- the horses, the cattle, the pear blossoms, and the hail. All hail to the hail. We mustn't forget the hail. I can show you some if you want to see it.

1 comment:

  1. My goodness.....hopefully your weather will settle down soon. I read there were tornadoes near Atlanta...