Posted by: Natalie | March 23, 2011

The Doorway into Spring

What a glorious day! With the equinox has certainly come the signs of brighter days; spring flowers bloom in full, vibrant colour, warming a smile long lost beneath winter dreariness. Tree buds stand strong and stark against the shock of bright blue above which has not been seen for many a month. But more wondrous, more infectious than anything else is the warmth that can only ever come from a sparkling Spring day sun.

Today the heating was set to dormant and the classroom blinds awoken and pulled back so the full extent of light could pour  into my prefabricated cube – a little nature bouncing from one sterile chipboard wall to another. The windows were flung as far as their safety catches would allow, on both sides of my block, to allow that gentle breeze to flow through and seemingly bring everything to life. The waft of early floral scents drifted sleepily around me, as if just waking and wandering clumsily into the path of unsuspecting people, similarly waking from their almost hibernated state. The number of smiles received today, for work, has reached a current high – everyone chittering and buzzing as if we ourselves the birds and bees, registering the first real warmth and embracing it whole.

Sweater and coat dispensed, this wonderful day put me in mind of a painting I saw at weekend. As a treat for my Aunt’s 60th, my Mum and I took her to an antiques fair at the NEC, Antiques for Everyone. There was a marvellous array of vintage clothing, jewellery, stunning wooden furniture, clocks, trinkets and of course, amongst a whole host of other items, paintings. The antique paintings did not really strike any notion with me other than a dusty unconcerned one. However, my eye was caught by contemporary artist Michael John Hunt, of the Hunt Gallery, Kent. His acrylic paintings had me stood still with wonder – such simple compositions, usually a chair, a door and a wall, but captured with such skill and integrity I could not help but stare open mouthed.

It was his painting, A Sunny Day, which I recalled this afternoon as I traversed the empty school yard, eyes closed and breathing in deep the warm glimmer of summer.

“A Sunny Day” by Michael John Hunt. Click for website link.

I love this picture, and I can just imagine it as a day similar to this one; a day long awaited and welcomed with wide open arms. The room still holds the winter chill, a coolness within its heavy walls which does not fit with the striking brightness of the incoming sun. In contrast, stepping into the light basks one in an almost startling heat, goosebumps covering the flesh at its strangeness. Dust particles float and dance in the yellow light, mingling with the scents of earth and grass and newly warmed wood. Everything here is comforting. There is a safety in simply standing with eyes tight shut while one gulps down bowls of Spring air. The shedding of winter feels dry to the back of the throat, the old thick atmosphere finally being moved around by fresh air – no longer stagnant and festering, but refreshing and open and new.

Unless it has some how escaped your notice thus far, I enjoy spring. Along with Autumn, much preferred to summer months which to me feel as monotonous as winter (and often just as cold and wet!).  Such days as this, still in March, are unexpected and feel rare like gems glimmering beneath costume tat in the bottom of a velvet coated jewellery box. Its as if the whole world had forgotten them until one day their subtleties reflect the light and they are restored to the world once more.

Spring makes me smile – the change in weather, the sudden brightness and blue, the happy daffodils, a certain sense of hope and possibility. No drug could lift my mood in such a way. It makes me content and motivated. So thank you Spring for knocking at my door, for giving me a happy day, and making words (whether coherent or not) come flooding back into my head.



  1. That’s a painting?! Whether or not it looks the same close up, I don’t know, but it looks like a photo on here!

    • You can certainly tell its a painting close up, its pretty big (and hugely expensive!) but I couldn’t get over just how real it looked. Might be just me but I thought they were beautiful!

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