Several of my warm-weather-loving friends here in central Kentucky have been longing for winter to be over, even though it’s been a mild one so far. A Facebook friend recently posted: “Now that Christmas is over, I’m SO ready for spring.” This statement was “Liked” by a number of people and commented on by several others. While I understand my friend’s hankering for balmy temps, I certainly don’t identify.
One of the things I like best about my home state is that we have four distinct seasons here—well, most of the time anyway. In some years a refreshingly cool spring suddenly becomes blazing hot, only for the temps to drop a couple of days later—even to the point of freezing. The frigid relapse inevitably happens when you have an afternoon at Keeneland planned.
Kentucky weather vagaries aside, I’m loving the winter, although the temps should be a bit lower, and I’d like to see more snow. My 14-year-old son is with me on this one, albeit with a different agenda: He’s longing for a “snow day” to miss school. I’m longing to take in the beauty of our area’s rolling countryside covered with a pristine frosting of white. The entire landscape looks perfect when blanketed with snow (it’s sort of like makeup foundation for the face of the land—it covers any blemishes). But even without a coat of white, the land in my neck of the woods is gorgeous in the winter.
I have the pleasure of seeing the crème de la crème, scenery-wise, of the Bluegrass five days a week on my commute to work in Frankfort from Lexington—some days traveling U.S. 60 on the journey and others taking I-75, depending on whether or not I’m shuttling my son to school on the north side of Lexington. Both routes are lovely, but U.S. 60 is sublime. Aside from “the castle” between Lexington and Versailles, which is a unique treat in itself, I pass various Thoroughbred farms with perfectly manicured paddocks. Although green is elusive this time of year, the scenery is spectacular with stark, bare-branched trees revealing their “bones” or structure. I find the shapes of deciduous trees in winter stunning—like elegant sculptures. In particular, I love sycamores, with their pretty bleached trunks and branches that stand out distinctly from the other trees.
In the Kentucky winter palette, about 87 shades of tan/brown/beige can be seen; a clear blue winter sky often offers a soothing contrast; and touches of green appear in evergreen trees and bushes, along with the rounded clumps of mistletoe clinging to the top limbs of trees as though hung there for decoration.
Because I’m enjoying the view so much, I’m not ready for springtime quite yet. How about you?
~ Patty, associate editor
Special thanks to Faye Lowe for the use of her photo. For more of Faye's Kentucky images, please check out her blog, "Summit Musings."