With so much imminent rainfall in April, you might think we were in for another Noah’s Ark voyage or chasing rainbows down the road for that elusive pot of gold. (Fortunately, seeing rainbows in the sky insures us that floods will never cover the earth again; the Bible says that.)

Nevertheless, the theme for this month is…‘April showers bring May flowers’ and also a whole lot of fresh exciting beginnings. It will open your eyes to glorious new colors everywhere and plenty of sunshine. (What would the world be without the spectrum hues from the sun cascading over our planet? It would be sad.)

But with it, you could now enjoy more bright and healthy morning walks.

Observe buds blossoming on bushes and marvel at baby leaves sprouting on trees.

Hear beautiful bluebirds chirping their happy songs and try whistling with them. They won’t mind if you’re off key.

Wherever you go you’ll meet people smiling and giving you the high sign, along with sharing their enthusiasm for being alive. Stop and chat with them awhile…talk is free!

Nothing will give you joy and exhilaration like the month of April, the perfect season for Mother Nature to show off all her creative talents. And she does it graciously every year! You’ll fall in love with her generous spirit and artistic tour de force with every breath you take.

Soon you will definitely smell the roses and all the flowers arriving in May, thanks to April’s beneficial showers. (And I thank April 30 for that perfect day when I married my wife Rosie, we shared love for 54 years.)

April is also an ideal time to get out the old bike, check the tires, give it a good shine and take off for the nearest park. Letting the spring breeze joggle your hair and color your checks pink as you hum Frank Sinatra’s classic song, ‘My Way’.

And as you cycle merrily, be careful not to hurt the squirrels scrambling around the park digging for hidden acorns. They look so comfortable sitting on their hind legs munching the nut, when they find one. Have your camera ready for that picture.

I’m thankful for the many happy memories April has given me, especially the spring days when I would ride on my Elgin bike through League Island Park in South

Philly, with my high school buddy Nick ‘Reds’ Marino. (Everyone called him ‘Reds’ because of his flaming red wavy hair and countless feckless on his face) His only hobby was weight lifting and he had the muscles to prove. I made sure he was my friend.

Reds and I knew every section of the park…the boulevard, boathouses, Gazebo, Swedish Museum and especially the lakes, our favorite fishing site. We would watch minnows squirming along the water’s edge but never able to catch any. They moved too fast. And gazing straight across the lakes and beyond was the Philadelphia Navy Yard where all types of ships where anchored in a row and stored in reserve for future use…cruisers, battleships and submarines. One lucky day we saw a giant, magnificent aircraft carrier with fighter planes lined up on its deck, their wings folded in half. We spent hours just sitting there enjoying the incredible site and like every kid our age, dreamed of becoming sailors one day. Like the ads say, ‘Join the Navy and see the World!

But for me that never did happen. When I grew up I was drafted into the Army during the Korean War…goodbye Aircraft Carrier. Nick enlisted in the Marine Corps.

However, April is well known for many great events in its history. One of the most momentous being April 23rd when the Jewish population celebrates ‘Israel Independence Day’ this year, (Israel declared Independence from British rule on May 14th 1948 and established the new State of Israel.) We’re proud of their courage.)

Other April months gave the world remarkable advancements like: Marconi’s Radio, Samuel Morse’s telegraph and code, the ‘zipper’ invented by Gideon Sinback and on the lighter side…the first match sold. And WOW, that April month when they finally discovered the North Pole…wasn’t it always there?

Let’s also honor that great British sculptor Frederic Auguste Bartholdi who gave us the Statue of Liberty. The symbol of Freedom and Friendship for all immigrants.

However, April did have its share of tragedies as well: The Titanic Ocean liner struck an iceberg and sank drowning 1500 people, the San Francisco earthquake caused 2,000 deaths, Sultana Steamship explosion killed 2,000 people and remorsefully our Civil war caused over 500,000 deaths. The Holocaust Remembered and President Lincoln shot and died and also Martin Luther King. April months will never forget them.

Still, there are numerous Artist, musicians, writers and celebrities past and present we are proud to honor this month. Appreciating their many talents throughout the years: Andre Previn, Leonarado Da Vinci, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Thomas Jefferson, John Steinbeck, , George Jessel, Charlie Chaplin and more recently, Alan Arkin, Jerry Seinfeld, Bette Davis and wonderful singers like Jane Powell, Barbra Streisand, Bobby

Vinton and Debbie Reynolds…all a credit to their profession.

Happily, April will give us Easter, baseball spring training and our Fighting Phillies try for a great season. (We’re looking for first place this year.)Yet, April’s rainy weather can be a challenge for everyone…but do like the British, carry an umbrella all day!

However, there is one very important part of April to keep in mind…that ‘Silver Lining.’ It’s always there whenever a cloud appears in the blue and after a rainy day. Look for it and find the sunny side of life…or maybe a new love that could make your dreams of a special relationship come true. If you’re an Aries then you are a leader with a dynamic personality, go for it!

Joseph. Barbella welcomes comments. You can reach him at jbarbella316@comcast.net.

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