Tomorrow the city of Macon, Ga., rolls out the red … make that light pink …. carpet for thousands of visitors from around the nation and beyond for the 26th annual Cherry Blossom Festival that lasts for 10 days.
Tour buses by the dozens will descend on our fair Southern town so visitors along with locals can attend cultural events, eat free cherry ice cream, frolic in the park, watch hot air balloons, gaze at a fushia-dyed poodle in a convertible, see otherwise conservative men wearing pink sports coats and, most of all, ooh-and-ah at the spectacle of some 300,000 Yoshino cherry trees in their springtime glory.
Festival planners and Mother Nature don’t always work off the same schedule. But from the photos (just taken) you can tell things look right on time this year.
My neighborhood exercise route has new splendor with an ongoing canopy of cherry blossoms. It makes the foot-pounding routine more enjoyable than usual — unless I get run over by a tour bus.
And there is one more downside to the otherwise festive occasion: pollen.
Had I been consulted, the cherry blossoms would pop out in May when the pollen has disappeared.
As an old beekeeper, however, I know the connection between the pollen and the blossoms, and the importance of pollen for vegetation. But I still don’t like it on my car, driveway, outdoor seating — or especially in my sinuses.
We like quick rain showers this time a year that rinse off the pollen without canceling the outdoor events or knocking off too many fragile cherry blossoms.
In someways, this is a classic battle of light pink vs. greenish yellow. Philosophically, it is our springtime version of the half-filled/half-empty glass.
The cherry blossoms are spectacular — when you look beyond the pollen.