A week ago I was driving along an almost impassable (due to heavy, blowing snow) M60 and now the temperature is in the 40s, rain one day and sun the next. Growing up in California I always thought talking about the weather to be the dreariest part of being old, but now in the midwest I can see why it's such a topic of conversation. Odd, unstable, and not very predictable.
A rim of snow remains along one side of the pond, but the ice is all gone. The large number of coots remain, leaving long silvery trails as the move across the water. Yesterday a cardinal was at the feeder and two young male robins were chasing each other around the house. A woodchuck appeared from somewhere and scuttled across the neighbor's yard and down over the bank to the river. And I'm pretty sure I saw the beaver swimming.
Here's a picture upriver. The floating island-like mats of vegetation have re-emerged from under the snow, and pairs of geese are checking them out for nest sites, like human couples looking at real estate.