Spring is in the air, at last. We here in northeastern Ohio have waited a long time for this.
This is the time of year when the daffodils start pushing their faces toward the sun and the weeping willows come alive after a long winter sleep. I particularly notice the change of season because, here on the farm, I think I have seen a muskrat paddling around in the pond - a sure sign of spring.
On my way home from church the other day I was able to put the windows down and open the sunroof in my car. There were bicyclists, people riding motorcycles and people just out walking on a pretty sunny Sunday.
I saw some drivers who just seemed happy to be behind the wheel, luxuriating in the freedom of the open road on a warm day. Other people were washing their cars, hanging out laundry and cleaning out flowerbeds getting ready for summer plantings
Thoughts of spring usually make me think of spring cleaning. The neighborhood I grew up in took pride in how many women would end up in the hospital for a rest after their bout of spring cleaning. Granted, that was years ago when being house-proud was a national past time. Still, a sunny day brings out the Eastern European cleaner in me and out I go with my bucket, my paper towels, my Windex and soon I have the cleanest windows on the block.
In my old neighborhood it was a shame if your curtains ever fluttered out the window. In my house, I throw open the windows to air the whole place out. Sometimes even the Venetian blinds flutter out the window. There is nothing like the smell of furniture polish and clean carpets to put a smile on my face.
However, as meritorious as my cleaning frenzy sounds, I must admit, I have a dirty little secret.
Did you ever notice with the first warm days of spring it seems that certain people have to turn the radio up in their car full-blast? They will pull up next to you at a traffic light with their car virtually vibrating from the sound of the music. Usually these cars are racy types like a Mustang or a Camaro.
Sometimes they even have darkened windows so you cannot see the driver. They sit and rev their engines at the light, rock 'n' roll screaming from their cars and immediately put the pedal to the metal. The car flies away from the intersection the minute the light turns green.
These same drivers during the workweek are restaurant workers, lawyers, teachers, garbage men, and other respectable job holders. They would never think of playing their music overly loud at work but something about being out on the open road seems to work magic on their inhibitions.
I even remember once witnessing dueling radios. One young person, in a cherry red Mustang, was playing rock 'n' roll loud enough to rattle his car windows. An older gentleman pulled up alongside him in a big Buick and, while waiting for the light, cranked up his classical music to the point that it drowned it out the rock 'n' roll!
One day this spring when you pull up to a traffic light and see a little red Honda vibrating with rock 'n' roll, with a woman of a certain age behind the wheel, be kind. Don't make a gesture or blow your horn in annoyance. You see I, along with the rest of the young people, cannot resist just one day of musical abandon behind the wheel.
I will probably be grooving to some old Beatles or Clapton riff. As the light turns green, know that my little 5-speed will go from 0 to 20 miles per hour in about 10 minutes. Also know that when that first warm spring day has passed, I will revert back to the church-going, house-cleaning little old lady that I am. Oh, by the way, if I see you out and about and you have your radio up loud, I will wave you a peace sign through my sunroof.
Beckes-O'Connor is a Brookfield resident. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org