Signs of spring are everywhere in Rehoboth

February 26, 2013

Yes, I saw it the other day. The first sign of spring that was reliable, something I could count on to make my day. We are all looking for that hope of saying hello sunshine, goodbye winter, as soon as possible.

Sure, we have the old-fashioned way of looking for that nod. It used to be that red, red robin, scurrying across the still-brown lawn looking for that ripe worm. Or you could just make out the buds on the daffodils peeking through with their hint of yellow. You could go even more traditional by following the calendar or that weird groundhog in Pennsylvania. But scientists agree this is far more accurate. I saw the first sign of spring cross in front of me on the sidewalk in Rehoboth; it was a man wearing tight short shorts, over blinding milk-white legs and thick black knee socks encased in sandals. Honest! Now you can’t get more precise than that. I would have taken a photo for documentation, but it was snowing a little too much to bring him into focus. Sure, anyone can wear shorts in warm temperatures, but at this time of year and with those China-white legs, it was unmistakable.

And just to confirm my suspicion that spring was around the corner, I was in my back yard when I noticed my second sign of the changing seasons - rotting wood. That’s right, when the snow and rain clear the area, you will notice your whole house may be missing shingles, gutters, antennas and actually some rooms. Weather will do that; it will strip your belongings bare.

One minute you are chatting with your neighbor, leaning against the side of your house and the next minute you are lying amidst molecules of sawdust, spitting out splinters of wood and picking them out of your hair.

The thing you have to do here is get to your nearest home improvement center and buy a bunch of tools and duct tape, since the only repair item you probably have in your home is a set of tweezers. It’s not important to be specific; any tools will do. In fact, I would purchase one of those giant kits that is capable of repairing a stealth bomber. You never know. The important point is to look like you know what you are talking about when you check out at the loading dock.

I would name drop a few items like socket wrenches, an eighth of an inch and the really big one, Tim Allen from “Home Improvement.” That ought to quiet down the people in line. You have to be careful around salespeople in these stores; if they even suspect you are an amateur there will be calls over the PA system, which is a secret language to other store employees that sounds like two dolphins mating. It’s a dead giveaway. Anyway, once you arrive home, you will need to assess the damage and make a reasonable plan to fix whatever has been eaten away by our ecosystem or vegan-type insects that have set up temporary sales offices. Spread out your tools so the neighbors think you are hard at work. Then as a safety measure, I would duct tape the entire house; large craters in the middle of the living room are so unattractive.

You can always Google a repair man; they usually are pretty reasonable. Of course, that’s after they stop rolling around on the ground and holding their sides from laughter that just doesn’t seem to stop.

Or, the heck with it, just go with the milk-white legs and black socks; it’s a happier sign, believe me.

  • Nancy Katz has a degree in creative writing and is the author of the book, "Notes from the Beach." She has written the column Around Town for the Cape Gazette for twenty years. Her style is satirical and deals with all aspects of living in a resort area on Delmarva.

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