We drove up to my in-laws for the weekend, up through the Central Valley late at night. Nearing Chico, we were startled to see what appeared to be a large flock of moths fluttering in the headlights. This being after 11 p.m., it took us an amazingly long time to process through the options. Not moths. Leaves, they must be leaves blowing in the wind.
No, not leaves. In the end, we remembered that it is February and that the almond trees are in bloom. We were driving through a shower of flower petals.
On Sunday I took my bike and rode through the orchards, admiring the trees. I could have wished for a sunny blue-sky day, but the blossoms were beautiful in any case.
Pedaling through miles of orchards on tiny roads, sometimes the scent of the blossoms was striking.
Individual flowers are waiting for bees--I hope that the reason I didn't see any is that it was too cold, not that there aren't enough bees.
A quintessential California scene: a giant Valley Oak standing protectively over the almond orchard. There are no leaves on the trees yet, just the see of slightly pink white flowers.