Sunday, March 17, 2013

Last Sunday Walk of Winter

Today is a deceptively sunny day - bright and mild-looking, but with a bitter nip to the air, and a wind of the sort that makes your eyes water. (The vernal equinox may be scheduled for Wednesday but I'm not sure Wisconsin has been notified yet.)

It's 28º (with wind chill, 19º), and I'm headed for the park to see what may be seen. Enough snow fell this week to cover the worst of the muddy snowbanks, and the lake, in defiance of the calendar, is still frozen and white:


Just inside the park entrance, a stand of red oaks is still covered with last year's leaves, which won't fall off until the new spring leaves come along.


This retention of leaves is called marcescence (I could hear you wondering).
Today's vocabulary word has been brought to you by Google. Whatever their faults, they do make it easy to get information.
Cattails are wearing their fuzzy parkas today:


Shadow of a merry-go-round on the snow-covered playground:


I like the look of the shadow spokes:


Looking up into a pine tree (also rather spoke-y; there seems to be a theme developing here):


I hear the eerie cry of sandhill cranes (a most encouraging sound and one I haven't heard since November), and now a few of them fly into view...


...looking for spring, no doubt - as are we all.

A little farther on, I spy tiny blossoms backed by red-twig dogwood, but fail to get a clear shot of either. No matter - a little photo-tweaking gives me this striking image:


Time for another shadow shot - "Blogger With Tree":


(Or "Blogger With Twiggy Antennae".)

A fascinating spiny blossom head:


This tree is just waiting for a little warmth to burst out into new life:


I love the graceful swoop and spray of branches dotted with delicate buds.

One last shot of the old water tower, which I pass on my way home...


...then it's round a few more corners, across a street or two, and I'm back in the warm house after the last Sunday walk of winter.

Maybe next Sunday I'll be riding instead....

(Are you listening, Spring?)

~ ~ ~

P.S. Happy St. Patrick's Day! :)

Gratuitous mini-quilt photo

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

32 comments:

  1. I don't think Wales has been told we're heading for the equinox either ... no snow in Wales but it's bitterly cold here.

    Gorgeous snowy images Sue :)

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    1. Here's to warmth - for Wales AND Wisconsin!

      Thanks Annie. :)

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  2. Pithy remarks, hehe......

    Yikes it looks cold there Sue.....great pics, love the shadow shots.
    Love the red twig Dogwood, stunning colour......
    Beautiful blue skie, not quite time to pump up the tyres I think.......hopefully soon.

    Claire x

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    1. Thanks Claire - this patch of red twig dogwood was very vibrant - I wish I had gotten a better normal shot of it.

      I'm DYING to pump up the tyres ... 40 degrees will do it for me, as long as the roads are clear. :)

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  3. So many beautiful photos. If spring is lost at least you have, cold, sunshine! Juliex

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    1. Yes, the sunshine is a great help to keeping up the spirits. :)

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  4. I hope you had a nice cup of hot chocolate to warm yourself after that walk. At least it was sunny, even a cold day is better with sun.
    Hugs to you,
    Meredith

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    1. Thanks Meredith - I think I actually had hot tea. Both are good after a cold walk. :)

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  5. I love the photos you can show us, from your walks. But worry about frost bite! Gracious, that's a bad-sounding wind chill!!!!!!!! Brrrrrrr......

    "Auntie"

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    1. Not that bad ... it's much worse when the ambient temp is in the low teens and the wind chill is down around zero. This was only eye-watering wind ... not finger-freezing wind. :)

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  6. Sunny and cold, yep that is what we had here yesterday. Today is cold and grey and a bit snowy.

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    1. Yes, we got several more inches of snow Monday. Yippee.

      :)

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  7. Lovely images Mrs. M, thank you. But please don't let the snow cross the Atlantic!

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    1. Thanks T-A - the snow seems to be quite happy here! But it's got to stop SOMETIME....

      :)

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  8. All too familiar I am afraid. ITs cold and snowy here In Chicago ....

    I love your shadow shots

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    1. Thanks Kathy - we do usually have the same weather, don't we?

      Another reader really likes the shadow shots too so I try to include them when I can. :)

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  9. great pictures! especially the one of the merrigoround! I only WISH that were gonna be the last snowy sunday - it doesn't look like things are getting any warmer in Chicago anytime soon. I am SO a spring/summer girl myself. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Thanks for commenting! Everyone's getting pretty desperate for spring around here. It would be nice to see some green grass again and not have to spend 10 minutes getting dressed for outside. :)

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  10. Let's hope Spring is listening! :-)

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    1. YES! I keep dropping hints and hoping that they will have some effect.... :)

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  11. Gosh, what a beautiful albeit cold walk! Your photos this time around are mesmerizing! I never did get to see the cranes this year, so your photo brings a great deal of joy. Love that Twiggy Antennae photo! So, so creative!

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    1. The antennae were not planned - I noticed them when photo editing. :)

      I was so happy to hear and see the cranes - they must know something we don't about Spring!

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  12. I love Google! I overlook their faults, as well - hehe. It's fun to see the last bit of Winter in your land. Those photos are amazing; nice spokes.

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    1. Gosh I only hope it IS the last bit of winter. We got 4 more inches of snow on Monday, and Tuesday it was about 10 degrees out when I got up. Winter doesn't seem to be in a hurry to depart.... :/

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  13. "Blogger with antennae" :-))

    I used to adore those merry-go-rounds. I don't see them much anymore. Must be considered safety hazards these days like so much else we all somehow survived.

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    1. This one is pretty old, but still works just fine (when the ground is clear - right now it's buried in snow). They repaint it every couple of years. :)

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  14. Happy St. Patrick's day to you too!
    You've got so much snow there! My parents say that this winter has been so snowy there too, in Kazakhstan. Snowdrifts 5-6 meters high!I wish I was there :)hehe
    Thanks for sharing the beauty of your country.
    Have a wonderful day!
    Anna

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    1. Thanks Anna - we do have plenty of snow but no drifts as high as in Kazakhstan! That IS a lot of snow. :)

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  15. Thanks for this wonder full post, Sue. Your artistry and observations make my heart sing :-)
    Xx,
    Gracie

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  16. Funny, in all the shadow pics previously your antennae were not so obvious....ah well, there's no point trying to hide these things from us....honesty IS the best policy!

    I like your edited dogwood picture, very clever.

    Looking forward to seeing next weeks pics from the saddle.

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    1. I was quite as surprised as you - previously having had no idea they were there.

      I HOPE next week's pics will be from the saddle - snow and a high of 37 are forecast. That's a bit chillier than I like for riding, but I'm about desperate enough to try anyway.... :)

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