I have mixed feelings about the month of March. Living in Maine, there are ups and downs.
March in Maine typically means the first real thaw of the year. (I say first because we are certainly not out of the woods regarding snow.) After the long, cold and snowy winter, the thaw is a real positive.
The time change means that we gain more daylight, and the sun just seems brighter. Around here, people start to venture more out of their houses. You start to see neighbors again. Start catching up on what’s been going on in their lives since the last few months were spent shoveling, snowblowing, sanding, keeping warm and avoiding the outdoors (unless, of course, you were sledding, ice skating or skiing).
The melting of the snow reveals sidewalks, gardens, sand and other treasures that were once buried or caught in the layers of snow.
The thaw of March also starts mud season. Mud season is the unofficial 5th season in Maine that forces most Mainers to carry a pair of boots with them at all times, just in case.
In March, big icebreakers start to clear out the ice from rivers (quite a sight to see, by the way). Flooding often commences as a result of the snow melt. Huge pot holes start rearing their ugly heads in roads. On windy days, like yesterday, leftover sand from treating slippery roads swirls around and covers the ground.
In Maine, it’s not uncommon to see people walking around in shorts and / or shortsleeves in March, despite being barely above freezing. In our book, if it’s sunny for long periods and not cold enough to snow, then it’s time to break out the warm weather clothes.
You know you live in Maine when it’s 60 degrees and you see the neighborhood boys playing catch in muddy grass next to a pile of snow wearing shorts. And the next day, you wake up and it’s 30 degrees and snowing. (Yup. That was yesterday and today.)
Come March, people “from away” start saying things like “I’m going to come up to Maine once it gets a little warmer.”
While certainly not the prettiest time to visit the state of Maine, the upside is that it’s a great time to go shopping at the outlets. (I personally like going to Freeport in March. They always have great sales going on.) There’s also the Portland Flower Show and, my personal favorite, Maine Maple Sunday. It also means that warm weather and all the fun that comes with living in Maine in the summer is just around the corner.
This is life in Maine in March. Love it or hate it, I wouldn’t change it for the world. It’s what makes Maine Maine.
We always have something to complain about whether it’s too hot, too cold, too snowy, too muddy or too many leaves on the ground.
The best part about Maine is that all you have to do is wait a bit, and the weather will change.
Happy Spring (hopefully).