Springtime in Arkansas Country

| 3/25/2014 9:37:00 AM

Country at HeartFortunately, I lived 17 springs in the country and could have lived even more, but those were all I got to live in my favorite place. So, now, whenever springtime dawns on the horizon, I travel back in time and savor all the pleasant memories of this "new-beginning" season. This is the time when farmers (including little old grandmas like mine), plant their first seedlings of the year. The ground is well saturated from a thousand winter rains and its soft, brown soil opens its arms warmly and welcomes the input of squash, okra, cantaloupe, and watermelon seeds.

When it comes to planting, I am more than lazy and have no desire to drop anything into the ground. Sometimes, though, I'd watch my grandmother plant her garden or follow my father when he'd plant cucumber seeds, but those times for me were more play than work. I just loved being outdoors after having been cooped up in the house for way too many cold months.

I remember this one year, my dad decided to plant cucumbers. He definitely wasn't a farmer, but I guess that year he felt like one. Anyway, I can still see my little skinny, bony self trudging up and down the rows, dropping seeds here and there and just enjoying the feeling of being enveloped in springtime's warm embrace. Apparently my dad, like me, planted that crop more for fun than to produce a harvest, since I don't remember it yielding enough little green "pimples" to even eat.

This season brings my favorite things in the world – chirping birds, sweet Honey Suckers draping over the fence and those beautiful daffodils, which are the joy of my springtime. As soon as their yellow petals opened, I gleefully plucked the flowers and took them home with me until I gathered enough to make my first spring bouquet. Never mind that others wanted to enjoy daffodils on display as they traveled up and down that dusty highway. I had them all to myself. Just like a selfish kid, huh?


Photo: iStockphoto.com/FredS