I don’t need to look at the calendar to know that winter has given way to spring. Out here in the desert, three indicators clearly announce that March has arrived: The fair, the heat and the first fruits.
The fair is in town this week in all its schlocky, throwback, family fun glory. Kids from the high school perform, stuffed animals line the midway, the rides whirl and everyone eats cotton candy and funnel cakes. The 4-H Club and the FFA strut their stuff; for weeks, I’ve heard nothing but tales of whose son has the finest pig and what prices the livestock auction will fetch.
As for the heat, well, March is the start of the long desert summer. While New England suffers under yet another foot of snow, we have already had two days on which the mercury has reached 95 degrees. We will likely hit the 100° mark before the end of the month, where the midday temperature will stay put for the next six or seven months.
Although I’m not a big fan of the fair and the relentless heat gets old quickly, I always look forward to the return of some of the best fresh fruit anywhere, just in time for Easter and Passover. My treats today were an incredibly sweet, juicy red plum and some explosively tasty blueberries (photos above).
And let us not forget the flocks of birds that nest in our tree, sing us shrilly awake each morning and poop all over our cars.
Apparently, however, not all of our avian friends are keen about celebrating springtime in California. I hear the Argentine cliff swallows have not returned to Capistrano this year.