Growing up back on Flamingo, no one needed to check Mr. Sim’s weather rock to know when it was springtime. We could just go outside and taste it between our teeth.
Don’t believe you can taste spring? Well, you obviously don’t live below the pollen line. The yellow blight is once again covering everything down here, and I mean everything. Cars, trucks, plants, and streets are now blanketed. If you walk your black Lab in the morning, by the time you get back home you’ll have a yellow Lab.
Like us back on Flamingo, if your kids play outside, then they too will be covered in the bright yellow dust. From early spring to mid-summer, there’s no way to avoid it. And if a strong wind blows your way, what do you do? Run! Or you’ll be covered by a pollen bomb.
Yes, unfortunately, pollen bombs are a real thing here in the South, and if you’re ever caught in one, you’ll need to immediately take a shower. Then burn your clothes.
Certain things change around our house when the pollen invades. First, playing the yellow car game is suspended for the next few months because every car is now a yellow car.
Second, all shoes, slides, and sandals must be taken off outside, otherwise there will be yellow footprints throughout the house.
Third, because pollen is extremely invasive when doors to the outside are opened, all floors have to be vacuumed and flat surfaces and anything on shelves must be wiped down at the end of each day.
Because of this, you should never, ever under any circumstances, open windows in the house. Doing so is an open invitation for the yellow scourge to come inside. A single grain of pollen is much smaller than holes in screens, making it easy for it to drift in and cover everything inside the house.
And lastly, ignore any and all of those messages written in the pollen some kind person has left on your windshield to “Wash Me”, and resist the urge to drive through a car wash. By the time you get home, your car will be just as yellow as before.
The solution? Just wait to wash your car for a couple of months until all this yellow stuff gets out of here. Unless, of course, you’re driving around our neighborhood. If so, just look for our handmade car wash sign. Yes, Dear Reader, our granddaughters have gone into business!
There is an upside to massive pollen clouds coming our way. As a kid, there’s lots of money to be made because most adults don’t like to have a yellow car two months out of the year.
Here’s what our granddaughters, Little One and Sweet Caroline, are going to do starting this weekend. They’re setting up a car wash in our cul-de-sac and are currently working on a huge sign: The Pollen Eradicators!
We’ve ordered T-shirts (yellow of course) and stocked up on cleaning supplies. They will clean your car outside while their helper (that’s me) cleans the inside.
The Pollen Eradicators Guarantee? When finished, your car will be completely free of pollen. (That is until the wind blows or the next pollen bomb hits.) And it will remain pollen free on the inside also — just as long as you don’t cut on the A/C, open any door, or roll down the windows.
Welcome to yellow season, y’all.
[Rick Ryckeley has been writing stories since 2001.]