Spring sends spirits soaring

By Micah Panczyk Record-Courier staff writer Published:

Many animals display odd bursts of energy with the arrival of a storm. Depending on the beast, it may chase its tail, bark excessively, moo excessively, or jump up and down.

Humans, it seems, have similar spasms with the arrival of spring. Some ride their motorcycles at high speeds without a helmet, some fix their roofs, and others simply skip the office for a trip to Dairy Queen.

"It's too pretty to be at work," said Tracey Yinkey, a Ravenna Savings Bank employee who insisted Friday that her afternoon ice cream run was not on company time. "I'm legitimately on my break here. And this is my first DQ of the season."

Truancy, like the songs of birds and the reanimation of flowers, is no uncertain sign that, while it is only March, fair weather is at hand. Friday's temperature reached an unofficial high of 79 degrees in the Portage area. And the wind, while whipping as high as 22 mph, was unseasonably warm.

"My son called this morning and said that it was hotter here than it was in the Bahamas," said Karen Hedge, Yinkey's Ravenna Savings accomplice. "Maybe it could be like this until summer?"

The extended forecast calls for a partly sunny skies and temperatures in the low- to mid-70's through Tuesday. These titillating prospects, however, could not keep Hedge from hedging her bet. "Remember though, this is Ohio ... you never know what it might do this afternoon yet."

Hedge's skepticism was shared by Ravenna resident Gloria Prendergast, an information and referral specialist at the United Way of Portage County.

"Its wonderful," she said. "But if it snows next week, then ..." she did not finish her thought, but rather issued a guttural growl. The thought of her sprouting daffodils and a bike ride in the woods, however, allowed Prendergast to recapture her voice.

"You get a little tired of your Cardio-Glide and treadmill machines," she said in reference to her winter exercise curriculum. "You just want to get out on the trail, and watch the sun come through the trees, the wildflowers, the river, the deer."

Other United Way employees are bound by duty to paint their hallway this weekend. So program manager Roger Way got his weather fix during lunch Friday: a book, a sour apple, and a seat on the grass under the sun.

"After being cooped up all winter long, you just want to be outside. You just feel your bones bake in the sun for the first time in six months."

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