Last days of lilac blossom

The hackberry always seems the first to bloom, bringing cold spells in early May as the old saying goes. Then the cherry, the apple and the lilac tree begin to flower. When the lilac blossom has mostly faded and jasmines are taking over, you know May is almost gone. You said: ‘There’s autumn too‘, and summer is around the corner but there’s something not quite right about the passing of May.

Besides, springs have become rather short in Moscow, as if the climate had become more continental in the past twenty years. As they say in Astrakhan, we jump out of fur coats into swimsuits in spring, than back in autumn. When I was growing up, spring was a serious business, lasting for the full three months. Starting in March with snow melting slowly and springs running from under dirty crusts of ice, carrying toy boats. Rainbow-colored puddles, of course. It’s almost as unbelievable now as skating in Amsterdam.

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