Pollenocolypse: springtime has arrived

Published 8:26 am Monday, April 15, 2019

It’s pollen’s world and we’re just living in it. For now at least.

That’s certainly how it feels every year when the yellow clouds begin to descend upon us like some sort of divine punishment. I’ll admit that I love seeing all the flowers begin to bloom in all kinds of bright beautiful colors, and I enjoy seeing trees fill up with green leaves again instead of dead branches. But couldn’t it happen without coating everything, including my sinuses, with a thick layer of sticky, yellow pollen??

Obviously not, of course because that’s not how Mother Nature works. But it would be nice if we could somehow get the pretty parts of springtime without having to deal with the annoying parts. Even if it rains, things aren’t going to stay clean for very long until spring is over. The best solution right now is staying inside your hopefully pollen-free house and just Googling pictures of flowers.

Pollen, however, isn’t the only thing associated with spring. It’s the season of “spring cleaning” and it’s the season of transition and renewal. With the dreariness of winter finally behind us, many people start focusing on cleaning out things they don’t need anymore. They start to fix things up to look better. Fields and gardens get planted, ready for a summer of growing before harvest season rolls around. As nature begins another growing cycle, we too take some time to transition into new things.

Maybe it’s just the pollen getting into my brain or something, but the more I think about it, the more the whole thing starts to feel like a metaphor. For example, I’ve written a lot of stories for the News-Herald recently about changes going on in Northampton County, both in the local government and the school system. It definitely feels like a period of transition these days with the former County Manager and former School Superintendent gone and now new interims in place while the Boards search for full-time leaders to step into the positions.

I don’t have to tell you that good leadership is important because it’s something we all already know. But I hope each Board carefully considers and evaluates who will take up those leadership roles in Northampton County as we continue forward. I’m not just a newspaper reporter, you know, but a citizen of the county too. I don’t have any children, for example, but I know that a thriving educational system for the children of the county is a benefit for everyone living here in a multitude of direct and indirect ways.

So whether we were expecting it or not, springtime is upon us in Northampton County. We can’t rewind back to winter, nor can we jump ahead to enjoying the summer. We’ve got to deal with the pollen for a bit until the transition is over.

And hopefully, when the pollen is settled, there will be plenty of pretty flowers to enjoy. If not, well at least, we have one advantage over nature and its yearly cycle: we don’t have to wait. We can continue to transition and change again until something works.

Holly Taylor is a Staff Writer for Roanoke-Chowan Publications. Contact her at holly.taylor@r-cnews.com or by phone at 252-332-7206.