Wednesday, May 25, 2011

white fluffy thing season

In Wilmington we have a fifth season called "Yalluh Pollen Season." In the brief month or so that resembles Spring--I have since learned what real Spring actually is, and I don't think we have it there--there are two weeks wherein the entire city is turned yellow. All the pollen from everything comes out at once so every car has a layer of it, the sidewalks, the street. And then if it rains, you get these really toxic-looking streams and puddles everywhere.

And so what a surprise for me when I learned that here in Bucuresti there is a similar fifth season, one I have been calling "White Fluffy Thing Season." It turns out the white fluffy things are actually called puf de plopi, or poplar fluff. I've never seen anything like it in my life. I wrote this to my friend a few days ago:

I wish you could see this white fluffy thing season. I was gonna tell you about it last night--it really is beautiful. Right now I'm writing at my desk and the sun is shining through my window on my legs and these little shadows kept floating across them. At first it scared me, I thought it was a bug or something and then I looked out the window and four stories up are all these white fluffy things floating around, so thick I swear it looks like snow falling. You'd like it, I think. It happens when you're out and about, one minute it's summer and the next the air is full of them.

And it is probably the prettiest thing I've seen in Bucuresti. Unfortunately it appears that I may be allergic to it. Maybe not--I've never had allergies before. But it's wonderful to watch.


  1. We don't have plopi here in Brasov (we used to have few but were cut sometime around year 2002). But what we have is papadii... and papadiile have puf de papadii. it appears once at the end of spring than again two times during summer...

  2. We had the same "event" in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia! And it looked like snow in June! I have a photo somewhere...

  3. Oh, and the white fluffy stuff in Russian is called "Пух" ~ pronounced poohkh ~ the k is in the back of the throat. Translated = fluff.