Today is the second day of spring. A wonderful time of year! Or is it? The first day of spring we were hit with a snow storm and today the temperature hovers around zero. Not exactly the spring weather Montrealers crave after a long, snowy winter. In reality though, spring time in Montreal is more of a psychological milestone than a physical one. Early spring is typically unpredictable and savvy Montrealers know better than to put away their winter coats and install their summer tires too soon. For newcomers this may be a bit of a shock and perhaps a bit disheartening but this in-between season that is more like a season all to itself, is actually quite wonderful. The days are longer, the sun is stronger. Grass begins to appear at the edges of frozen gardens. The birds return and well....you really can smell spring in the air. It is also high season for some awesome spring skiing. Many municipal hockey leagues are winding down and families prepare for summer soccer leagues and other favoured warm weather activities. So, in a way, this early spring season is actually fraught with pleasure... of anticipation (often the best kind). Gardeners start to gaze out the window to imagine the perfect placement of a new flowering shrub. Families finalize summer trips to the coasts of Maine and Cape Cod. Kids pull out cleats and swim suits, making sure all is ready for a season of great fun. So make the most of Mother Nature's tease into summer. Put on your rubber boots and go for a muddy walk on Mount Royal or head down to Saint Catherine Street to check out the spring fashions. The ultimate Montreal spring time experience though, is to enjoy the first balmy day (by that I mean above 15 degrees) by heading to a great cafe, sitting out on their sidewalk patio and watching the people go by. To me, this activity has always been one of the things that typifies living in Montreal: being social, fashionable, enjoying great cuisine and Mother Nature, in a way unique to our climate and culture. Welcome to Montreal.