We all have our own ways of determining whether spring has arrived. For many people it has to do with ice on the water or flowers in the field.
For Ingo Stahl in Bavaria, things are looking good; he just sent me word that:"Since five days spring has arrived - sunny and warm, 18 to 20 degrees celsius. Snow and ice have gone".
Here in Southern California we are blessed with mild conditions, so the arrival of spring is more difficult to identify. Having once lived in Nome, Alaska, I was well aware of the change of season:
During winter, the Bering Sea freezes with a sheet of ice two feet thick. Each spring, when the sea-ice cracked and floated away, we called it "breakup", and it was cause for celebration.
I'm expecting to hear from a number of gondola operators in the Northern Hemisphere about spring launchings.
If you're one of those folks who'll be "splashing" a boat soon - send me a photo or two and I'll post it here.