A Behavioural Guideline for the First Day of Spring in Germany

Awake to see blue sky. Leap out of bed and put the coffee on. Today is going to be a good day and any moment not spent outside will be a moment completely wasted.

Run around the house turning any heaters off.

Throw open all windows. This isn’t just a durchluft session, this is for real.

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Wash your hair safe in the knowledge you can go outside with it damp, and not have your head actually freeze.

Sift through your wardrobe and find something you haven’t worn in months. Squeeze into it. Bonus points for a pop of colour, or a short sleeve. Be sure to wear a long sleeved cardigan over the top, just in case.

Consider shoe selection and opt for a lighter boot, or something completely inappropriate for the month of March, like a sneaker.

Select a light pashmina in a Spring tone, and spend ages perfecting the loose, casual knot.

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Find the 5ml left of the perfume you wore all summer and douse yourself in it.

Slip into your seasonal-shift jacket. Bonus points if it isn’t waterproof. Sunny days are for being flippant. Regard your heavy winter coat with barely-concealed, triumphant contempt. Consider putting it away for the year, but leave it hanging on the coat hook just in case. It may snow tomorrow.

Go outside. Join the rest of the city on the street.

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Greet everyone you pass. Bonus points if you manage to mention the weather to at least thirty people.

Find the nearest ice cream joint and join the queue. Mention the weather a few more times while you toss up between a normal scoop or some sort of spaghetti eis monstrosity.

Seek out a park or body of water. Unpack your picnic. Count the number of people who have tied a piece of elastic between two trees and are repeatedly, with absolutely no success, attempting to walk along it.

Alternatively, find a cafe. The outdoor seating will have been set up in 30 seconds flat, and you can wrestle with half the city over a wobbly table in a small pool of sunshine.

Spend the entire day outside.

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Return home to a house full of fresh air and fading afternoon sun. Close all the windows. Decide to live a little and leave the kitchen window open.

Realise for the past hour or so, you have been itching your eyes, and your nose is running. Recall that last year you discovered you were horribly allergic to birch trees.

Seek out the antihistamines.

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Respond to an invitation to grill next weekend. Pray it won’t be 0 degrees and raining ice.

Fall asleep expecting to wake up the next morning and all of this to have been a dream.

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Wake up the next morning to blue sky.

Consider hanging up your winter jacket for good. Keep it out just in case.

19 Replies to “A Behavioural Guideline for the First Day of Spring in Germany”

  1. I miss the seasons … and love your short stories of how you’re experiencing Northern Germany. Keep the stories coming …
    Dagmar (currently living in California)

  2. I was SO tempted to put away my big heavy Goosedown winter coat after the glorious weather we enjoyed this weekend..but I am leaving it hanging on the bedroom door (better not to tempt fate) 😉

  3. actually it sounds a lot like living in Atlanta… Moved here from a quarter of a century in sunny, wonderful Southern California – had no clue there would be wind and thunder and snow and pipes busting from freezing! And the rain – Seattle and Portland have nothing on Hotlanta!

  4. I can feel the joy of winter ending the way you describe it. When I used to live there, I felt like I emerged after 6 months of indoors. It must have been harder then even. We never used to have 20 degrees in March. I was pleased when we once had 15 at the end of March.

  5. You just described my day yesterday to a T. Leaving the windows open and coming back to an apartment full of fresh air was HEAVENLY!

    Goshdarn birch trees! *shakes angry fist*

  6. You totally nailed this. I do almost all of the points mentioned when the sun is showing for the very first time. 🙂
    In Kiel you could easily add: Head to either the “Kiellinie” or any beach nearby.
    And yes, my feet have already been in the water of the Baltic Sea this year. Not to mention that I was walking barefooded along the beach of Eckernförde today. 😉

  7. i am a fervent onion system.supporter thus i wear the same jacket all year round just the underworks differ 😉. I also wear shorts from about 0deg C. I wear wildling or mocs in winter and grom about 10 deg C i wear slip slops/ nothing on my feet.

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