04 December 2009

Winter wonderland for a moment

I just glanced out my window and noticed snow. Yes, it’s definitely a form of precipitation that is whiter than rain. Still, it’s all wet and watery on the ground, so the effect is sort of lost. Unless the ground temperature drops. Which could happen, you never know.

Having lived in the south for so much of my adult life, my few encounters with snow stand out in stark relief to all the other days of my life without snow.

There was some snowfall last year one evening. I spoke with my sister-in-law on the phone the following day and she said that T & D were outdoors taking photos, but they didn’t bother to fix the lighted reindeer on the lawn that had fallen over. That is such a classic Christmas card photo opportunity! I couldn’t stop laughing, just thinking about my crazy brother and nephew, taking those nutty snapshots of toppled over reindeer in the snow.

I was in Chicago once many years ago, the day before Thanksgiving and snow began falling in earnest. Big, clumpy flakes. It was beautiful. I could hardly tear myself away from the window to finish my work that day. Sort of like today. My eyes keep straying to the window, just to make sure. Yes, it’s definitely still snow.

Then there was the time when I was working in northern Virginia and 23 inches of snow fell in one night. Mobility screeched to a halt as the state public works forces and private contractors rallied to clear roads. But I soon discovered the problem with snow. You have to live with it until it melts. You can pile it up, but it just doesn’t go anywhere and soon begins looking like ugly, toxic waste alongside the road.

Living with snow for weeks is completely different than the Houston experience of watching the snow fall from the sky, wondering if a fraction of an inch will accumulate on the top of a car. Enough to gather up in your hand and touch, taste, crunch into a ball and throw. That is the joy of snow.


  1. While I love to watch the snow, I ,too, dislike the after effects...and the crazy drivers and snarled traffic! The part of VA I currently live in doesn't get the accumalation I got in central Va as a child. Nothing more beautiful than mountains covered in snow!

  2. Snow is beautiful and I'm looking forward to some. But you're right. With tons of it, it can stick around for so long that it gets gross and you get so tired of everything being cold and wet. And icy.
    But right now, I'd settle for a little winter wonderland...

  3. Snow is gorgeous, but I hate it. I live on top of a curvy, icy hill in Seattle and when it snows I get trapped. I can walk to a bus, but it takes AN HOUR to get to the bus stop. Blah. We're expecting snow next week, so I'm doing all my Christmas shopping NOW!