I remember when I first got to New Orleans, and I was quite certain that I had never seen a more beautiful place on earth, at least when it came to the everyday flora. It’s all banana trees and palms and brilliant azaleas and oh my, it is just so pretty there. Baltimore, well, it take a minute longer to grow on you–or at least me. But then there was fall, winter, and then springtime. The flower trees flower in waves, first the white crabapples, then the pink cherries, and then, well, I have to wait to let the parks and streets remind me. On Tuesday there were no flowers on the tree at the entrance to campus where I bike in; when I left that night, the smell of it was in the air. Everything changes just that fast after changing oh so slowly. Friday’s ride was a trip around the flowering trees of Roland Park and just down the hill to Mount Washington. It’s pretty hilly over there, so I alternated between huffing and puffing in low gear to wheeeeeeee!-ing down hills, and oh, it felt so good to have sunshine on my legs and arms again! The ride home was a climb up Lake Avenue, a ride I haven’t taken since last summer. Yep, there’s more hill climbing in my sweet, summery future, but this first one was a push. I made it without stopping to walk or getting hit by a car, so I call it a win. It was downhill almost the whole 5 miles home, so I had plenty of energy to stretch out on the Surly and check out the trees. I stopped to snap a picture of some the dripping cherries in front of St. Mary’s, but this picture just can’t capture the color or the delicate feel of the branches, just like I can’t explain what this spring air smells like. For me, it all looks like I’ll never be able to keep my eyes open wide enough or long enough to see it all, and I’m in love with this place. Turns out that like New Orleans, Baltimore is the most beautiful place on earth.