Easter and Passover coincide this year, making this a weekend with religious significance for many. Regardless of your spiritual inclinations, those observances also mean spring is on its way.

When living on the snow-bound mainland, that meant a lot more to me. It was a sign that the sun would return and a hope that there would be a few weeks of mild weather before summer’s brutal heat. While Hawaii is more more moderate in both summer and winter, slight seasonal changes are still noticeable. This is about the time of year that tee shirts feel too hot and I switch to lighter fabrics. Through the winter, I often wear a light sweater or long sleeved shirt to ward off the chill. Around this time, I leave those at home and carry a shawl for the air conditioning of the bus and office.

I was reminded of how gentle Hawaii’s seasonal cycles are by a recent trip to the mainland. There, spring was struggling to break winter’s grasp. Sunny afternoons were bracketed by mornings and evenings that felt really cold to me, although locals were relieved to shed heavy coats for lighter jackets. Rain showers are another sign of spring on the mainland. We have rain year-round in Hawaii but even when winter brings heavy showers, they are warm. I was caught unaware by a spring rainstorm in Seattle that froze my toes. The slippers went back in my suitcase and I bought close-toed shoes to wear for the remainder of the trip.

The reverse is true, as well. A recent visitor for a conference appeared at the opening reception wearing an aloha shirt. I asked how he happened to have local attire, had he visited Hawaii before? He confessed that everything in his suitcase was too hot. His first act upon arriving was to ask for directions to a thrift store where he bought tropical-weight clothing. I’m not sure how or whether he got it all home, but the clothing he had brought stayed in the suitcase, untouched. This was for a conference in March, when it is somewhat cooler. My first Hawaii visit was for a conference in August, when it seemed really hot then and still does now that I live here year-round. However, Hawaii summer brings temperatures that top out in the 80’s, a far cry from daily readings over 100 that I lived through in other states.

No matter what summer or winter bring, it seems that spring is a welcome interlude. I hope you are enjoying a wonderful spring weekend wherever you are!

3 COMMENTS

  1. Nice article, but what about changes in our surrounding environment? Such as the plumeria trees slowly beginning to blossom in full again? The school fairs starting up? How difficult it is to make a hair appointment at your local beauty salon because prom season is upon us? The availability of lychee at the local supermarkets & farmers markets? Gas prices going up again as we inch towards summer? (although that isn't really a reliable indicator anymore!) 🙂 😛 Perhaps as you live here longer you'll start noticing these subtle changes around you.  When you've been here in the islands as long as I have (my entire life) these changes really reinforce the passage of time!

  2. The plumeria trees are a wonderful indicator of spring. I'm still learning the growing seasons for fruit and veggies, though. It is nice to have time to notice the subtle changes in Hawaii seasons. Thanks for the comments!

  3. after 14 years in Hawaii, I am now in northern Idaho.  I am appreciating spring here like I NEVER did in Hawaii.  It's so nice to feel warm air and be able to walk outside without a coat.  In Hawaii, I think I lost the appreciation of spring a bit.  🙂  no more!

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