I love the fact that in Austria there are four distinct seasons. Over the next few weeks I’ll be publishing creative pieces on the sights, sounds and smells of the four seasons. We’ve already been through winter and spring. This is the third week, progressing into summer. Enjoy!
The days extend, stretching endlessly across flourishing crops – corn towering twice the height of the average person, wheat waving its golden fronds lazily at passers-by.
The grass springs up, unbelievably long; thick bushes encroach from all sides, stinging nettles and sharp thorns threatening each bare-legged step. Trees and vines are weighted down with soft, plump fruit; people carry buckets and convert their contents into thick conserves and sweet desserts. Ice cream sundaes and sweating faces gleam under the shade of trees and umbrellas. Skin tans and bikini clad bodies frolic and splash in lakes warmed almost to bath temperature. The wind blows soft and hot on flushed skin and lips seek relief from iced water and beer and spritzer.
Almost every day the peace is assaulted by the turbulence of yet another summer storm, unleashing a fury of power through wind, heavy rain, hail and forked lightning shards that illuminate the dusky sky. Fierce grumbles of thunder and erratic flashes of light disturb all but the deepest of sleepers, raging brutally outside, thrashing itself into stillness.
People take to the mountains, carrying backpacks and hiking sticks, congregating in the cooler altitude of the thin air, clinking bottles and small tumblers of schnapps. The world is alive, the atmosphere carefree, and the evenings stretch long and laughing and full of promise.