Friday Two Cents: Here’s To Spring


   Well today is the first day spring or the spring/vernal equinox. The word equinox comes from the Latin words meaning, “equal night.” All over the world, days and nights are approximately equal. Today, the Sun rises exactly in the east and sets exactly in the west.  At the equinoxes, the tilt of Earth relative to the Sun is zero, which means that Earth’s axis neither point toward nor away from the Sun. However, the tilt of Earth relative to its plane of orbit, called the ecliptic plane, is always about 23.5 degrees and so on.

For me it is a sign that the long winter is almost over and we can look forward to summer. Usually baseball’s spring training picks me up but this year it has been difficult with all the work associated with teacher’s college. But this week I was able to go back to my school for the after school program and work with the children. Always during this time we go on field trips and I must say that I enjoy them.

The Pioneer way of making Maple Syrup.

One such trip was to a conservation area called Kortright Centre for Conservation, located north of the city of Toronto.   This was not my first time there but I must say that it is one of my favorite field trips. The most significant thing they do for the children during this time of the year is the Maple Syrup Festival. They have different locations in the conservation area where they tell and show you how maple syrup was made. They showed how the Iroquois, early settlers and the modern ways of making maple syrup/sugar.


Walking in the Woods.

This is a great outing for the students and they learn a lot, but I love leaving the city and just walk in the woods. You see because I have been there several times I know the other areas to go to. So after the maple syrup demonstrations I took the students and the other teachers on a nature hike. There I help the students look for other things like where fly larva live and how the birds get and eat them. We look for and found owl pellets. Owl pellets are the mass of undigested parts of a bird’s or in this case the owl’s food they regurgitate. Usually it is the hair, fur, bones, teeth, feathers or the claws of whatever the bird eats. This is a great opportunity for the students to understand what other animals eat and how they survive.

I can tell you that I really wore out the students and half of my group fell asleep either during the reptile show or on the bus ride back to the school. But more for myself I felt exhilarated walking outside in the open air without cars rushing by or more importantly without feeling that some part of my body would fall off do to frostbite.

I felt so energized that I continued to take walks on my lunch breaks this week. I think that this is what spring really means, well at least to me. I do actually feel like there is a spring in my step these past few days. The trick is to continue this trend. Not just for my mental health but this past winter I have gained a few pounds with all this being stuck inside and sitting trough lectures. Hours upon hours of just sitting, reading articles and writing assignments. I need to get out and feel the sun on my face again, to hear the wind blow and smell the life that is all round me in the world.

Here’s to spring and to the world and myself waking up for our long winters’ slumber.  


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