The calendar may not make it official yet, but spring has arrived here in central Arkansas. The Bradford pears and tulip trees have been in full bloom for a week, and what was at first a slight scribble of green on the deciduous trees has turned into a definite halo.
More importantly, spring break has arrived. And after this week of interviews, petition drives, admissions huddles, and road races, it's none too soon. Many years, spring break is just a scheduled hiatus in the midst of business as usual. This year, it feels like I've earned a vacation. To borrow a metaphor from March Madness, it's been a full-court press both here at the university and in my other leadership position in my scholarly organization. A week with no appointments, no classes, and only self-imposed deadlines? Sounds like exactly the break I needed.
Today, walking across campus in the pleasant seventy-degree weather, a breeze ruffled my halr (which I've been growing long as a last-ditch protest against the gray that's starting to appear. It occurred to me how different the wind can be from one season to the next. Four months ago, the wind was my enemy; I fortified myself against it with my warmest scarves and hats, put my head down and tried to duck from building to building as quickly as I could before its icy fingers penetrated my defenses. Today the breeze was warm and welcome. I could hardly stop myself from lifting my head and inviting the wind to lift my hair off my neck and shoulders, letting it spread out and away from me. What a change -- to welcome the wind rather than warding it off.