Printemps: sure signs that it's spring in Central Oregon

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The first thing you have to remember when it comes to spring in Central Oregon is that it's always the season of weird weather. And while the international news services carried a piece earlier this week about it being the warmest spring worldwide in recorded history, the weather information gatherers must not have called Bob Shaw or asked any locals how things were weather-wise here this spring.

The up-and-down, ever-changing pattern of local weather continues leaves longtime residents saying, "so what's new?" and newcomers wondering, "does spring ever come to this part of the world?"

Lulled into complacency by the lovely PPP weekend, Bend residents now have wind, rain and a dash of snow thrown in for good measure.

As one old timer told me the other day: "As long as I can remember, we never have a had a true spring. We go from what I call the tag end of winter directly to summer in a day or two in early June."

I agree in part. After the mega-winter of 1992/93, we had a real spring. It got nice and warm by March 15 and stayed that way well into June.

Of course, come June 10 and the next two and a half months were cold and rainy. So we got a spring at the expense of not getting a summer.

But there are signs that spring is in the air. After a long hiatus from Bend streets, boombox cars have started appearing again. Some emit absolutely earthshaking noise and leave me always wondering if the drivers of said vehicles have hearing left.

One of my boombox favs of last week was a fancy 2009 Lexus blaring a rap song about life on urban mean streets. The impact of car and song was fraught with irony.

Not so ironic is the return of all the cruiser bikes to City streets. When the cruisers hit the asphalt, I know that spring or a semblance of same is near.

Another sure sign that spring is supposed to be here or is nearby waiting to get a chance to arrive, is people trying their hardest to drink and dine outdoors at local restaurants. Jackets and sweaters still are required wear but one has to hand it to all the people who basically say screw it and challenge the weather to ruin their outdoor experience.

So let it snow, we're ready for what the weather throws at us. After all, it's spring.


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