Children in Kurdistan's Kanda Soora village, February 24, 2008. Photo by Sharooz Sharifinasab, Fars News Agency.I'm home with a dreadful cold. I stayed away from writing last night, simply because between the cold and the medication I had taken, I was sure I would sound delirious and stupid! This is the second day of work I'm missing, canceling long-standing appointments and meetings I really needed to attend. Though I seldom miss work days, my work life just has to wait until I am better again. Despite the silly cold, my spirits are good (it's simply amazing what a fistful of drugs can accomplish!). In between the drug-induced naps, I am sitting here thinking about Nowrooz. About my huge spring cleaning project, khooneh takooni, about the cookies and sweets I will have to order, about my sabzeh, the wheat I will have to grow in my big blue plate, and about helping out a few of my single male friends with their haft-sin. My calendar has filled up with events and lectures and celebrations all through the month of March and at this moment it feels overwhelming to think about all that I will have to be doing, but I'm sure when the time rolls in, I'll be ready. Is it just me, or is there something really strange, almost genetically instilled, in all Iranians having to do with the last few weeks of winter? Around this time of the year, I feel an awakening, something almost physical, in the way I feel and think and move! I gear up for the season change, for the change of the year, and for all that is dear and important to me in starting a new day, now rooz. I get filled with memories of Nowrooz's past, my parents and my childhood, and am reminded of every traditional chore my mother used to do around this time of the year. I get excited imagining the fragrance of the hyacinths, sonbol, in my house, and the colorful tulip pots which soon will be lining my walkway. I feel so very alive around this time of the year. Alive and full of hope. Awake, alive, and hopeful, even with a miserable cold. Go here to see times for Spring Solstice, tahvil-e-sal, in your part of the world. Courtesy of Bahram Maravandi.