We are still several days from spring officially being here for another year, but the forecast for the next few days shows some sun and, to some extent, some warmth.

Spring and summer are, without a doubt, my favorite two seasons. Early fall is OK but you can definitely take winter and dispose of it, even the ones we have in Georgia.

Quite frankly, I fear Old Man Winter is not finished causing havoc, and I am more than concerned that March may end up being a brutal month before all is said and done. In fact, many times March turns out to be our coldest month and best chance for snow. (Snow has already fallen where I live once in 2020).

This past Sunday (March 1) the weather was nice. After being confined for most of two weeks with a nagging illness, it was nice to venture outside for some pre-spring yardwork. Spring does always seem to replenish the mind, body and soul, and some of the things I look forward to and long for include:

•The return of high school baseball: Once we get past the early part of the season when the weather is often still cold and very windy, it is quite enjoyable spending an afternoon at the local ball park. On those perfect afternoons when the sky is blue and the temperature is warm, it has always been one of the best parts of my job as a sports writer to cover local high school baseball action. Through the years, I have been fortunate to witness some quality teams and I have already been able to take in some games during the new season.

•Yard work: For many people working in their yard is viewed as a necessary evil, and for a long time it was that way for me. Even when I bought my first (and to date only) house more than 20 years ago, I viewed it that way. However, in recent years I have turned yard work into a stress reliever. Being outside in the spring and summer and soaking up the sun became something I looked forward to during the gloomy winter months. I have already thought of a couple of projects that I want to try this year and as a bonus, yard work is good exercise for me.

•Fishing: When I was younger I had a passion for fishing, although I admit I have not been in years. I keep saying I am going to take it up again but always never seen to have the time. Perhaps this is the year I will make time. I noticed recently that my high school alma mater is even forming a competitive fishing team. Now that is something I might actually have excelled at back in the day. At one time I enjoyed fishing so much I actually thought about doing it professionally.

•Fort Yargo State Park: To me, this is one of Barrow County’s best attractions. Even during the winter months, I enjoy going although it’s certainly more enjoyable during the warmer months. For me it’s about relaxing and taking time to reflect. Once spring arrives and continuing all the way through the fall I often make several trips a week when my work schedule allows. I take my chair (the same one you see me sitting in at those baseball games) and just sit, often for a couple of hours. It’s physical and mental relaxation for me and during some recent stressful times it’s something I definitely need.

•Car washing: I like to keep a clean vehicle year-round and it’s funny some of the looks I get when people drive by during the winter when I’m washing my car. Of course it’s more tolerable to do when it’s warmer. I’m one of those though who has washed his vehicle when there was still snow on the ground (“Hey buddy! Don’t break your neck looking at me!”), so during the warm months I usually wash mine once a week.

Spring is close to being here once again and I am certainly glad. Let’s just hope we don’t have to endure another winter storm or another below freezing cold snap before it gets here. My mind keeps going back to that snow and ice storm in 1993, which happened in March.

A FEW POLITICAL WORDS

In closing, this week the Democratic presidential primary was headed toward Super Tuesday as I penned these words. Joe Biden won the South Carolina primary this past weekend rather easily and kept his campaign alive, at least for the moment.

In a surprising move Sunday evening, Pete Buttigieg ended his campaign. Tom Steyer had already called it a campaign. Some political experts are saying it is now down to Bernie Sanders and Biden, although Michael Bloomberg had still yet to compete in an event prior to this week.

We will know much more by the time you read these words as several states were taking part in Super Tuesday. Early voting began earlier this week for the Democratic presidential primary in Georgia. That actual election date is not until March 24. Everything could be decided by that point, so it remains to be seen how much of our impact the voters in our state will have.

We are also currently in the middle of sign-up week for candidates in Georgia. There will be some interesting races even though most statewide offices will not be on the ballot in 2020. Qualifying for the Senate seat previously held by Johnny Isakson certainly is worth keeping an eye on.

Of course, any local race, regardless of where you live, is important. Local city councils, county commissions and school boards always have a direct impact on our lives and our wallet. Each race is worth closely watching. This year is no exception.

Winder resident Chris Bridges is a former editor for the Barrow News-Journal. You can email comments about this column to pchrisbridges@gmail.com.

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