Sunny skies, beautiful blooms, and balmy temperatures. For Richard Hilton, it's the perfect recipe for a morning on the fairway at Bowden Golf Course.
"You're out in nature and it's just a beautiful day," he said, "so I couldn't ignore it. I had to go out and play golf."
Hilton was having his first golf game of the year on a day where the pollen county for the year was very high. According to Macon allergist David Plaxico, that is the highest level of pollen where almost all individuals with any sensitivity at all to tree pollen will experience symptoms. It has bumped to total pollen county to 5300 pollen grams per cubic feet of air. That's still not as high as it was last year around this time at 5810 pollen grams. But Plaxico said the tree count hasn't hit it's peak yet. That will happen in about three weeks.
Hilton said he would typically be sniffling and sneezing as he teed off, but he took precautions.
"Every night I take allergy medicine to make sure I don't wake up sneezing my head off and with a runny nose," he said.
After tree pollen, Plaxico said Central Georgians will have to deal with grass and weed pollen. It's a nuisance for some, but the pollen is a blessing for Chuck Duggan who owns Fountain Express Carwash on Gray Highway.
"Pollen season is definitely our busiest time of the year. People are coming out of the winter when it's been cold and kind of dreary and they're ready to get their cars cleaned up."
Duggan said the bad economy had him worried when the carwash opened, but this spring, hope is blooming.
"We've washed more cars in the last two weeks than we ever have," he said, "We've been open since 2010 and it's been the best two weeks ever."