Wind and rain again, after a bright day when the clouds withdrew to the east, rising above the sierra like a second range of mountains, full of light. Mercurial spring, one day raging, the next cheerful, then falling into gloom or becoming inexplicably tranquil -- no wonder it is the season associated with love. April's adolescent temperament is a constant source of surprise, and utterly predictable in its inconsistency. It is the month of hormonal excess. But we must pass through it to reach my favorite month of May. I must say that when I lived in Los Angeles, May was not my favorite month. There, May is apt to be overcast and clammy, or overcast and sultry, or just smoggy. Here in the mountains, May is a month to delight the senses with fresh scents floating on balmy breezes, green grass and leaves, splashes of flowering color, and blue sky draped with fluffy white clouds. But first, we must deal with April's unpredictable temper. This is not an entirely unpleasant task, but it can be distressing, with plans disrupted by sudden shifts of weather, and seductive moods which burst forth like unexpected blossoms, drawing one's attention from the work at hand to wander the sunny fields and then, more often than not, get drenched by a sudden rain. April can sometimes make me look back with fondness at elegiac autumn and its predictable, almost stately decline.