Christian has to be at work, long before the crack of dawn. I am an early riser, whether I am working or not, so Christian did not mind, waking me this morning . . .for there was snow on the rabbit patch! For just a little while, fluffy flakes fell, til a few inches had accumulated. People either love or hate snow, in the south. I love it. Now, this bit of snow, is expected to be a very short lived affair and it just may melt not long after morning light. A cold rain is expected to follow, after all, so I sprang out of bed to see the wonder of snow falling.
It was hours before daylight, but I could see the territory was covered and snow was falling in big fluffy flakes. I knew Mama would not be so amused, as she is not a fan of snow. I love it. That is the thing about snow, in the south . . .people love it or hate it. I have never met anyone neutral on this subject. The aftermath is mud and it is a messy affair – and woe to housekeepers because of that-but I will bear a dirty floor, for a few hours of wonder.
As soon as daylight came, I went out to survey the landscape. The pines were frosted and I found them beautiful. The fields and the woodlands behind them, were fit for a postcard . . .surely not even Mama, could deny that. To walk in “woods filled up with snow” is an almost holy experience. Oh, I regretted not splurging on some snow boots, almost immediately.
Now, all you have heard about the south and snow is true. I expect, even churches will close today. Most small towns, do not have snow plows. If they do, that is of no consequence to country dwellers, for we rely on the farmers to clear out roads. Besides, only a few souls are brave enough to venture out. Country roads, are often lined with woods causing patches of ice to cover the road. This is what causes the madness at the groceries in the days before a prediction of snow. As far as I know, no southener has ever starved during a snow storm. Besides, stores and businesses often close altogether, in the event of snow.
There was only a slight chance of snow, today. That is all there ever is, for us. Once years ago, snow was forecast with certainty. In light of that, my dear friends and co-workers, Rae and Jo Dee, and I decided to spend the night together, for school would be closed, after all. We bought a lot of the junk food, we considered forbidden-and stayed up late. Of course, I was the first to wake the next day, and immediately went to the window to see the snow. I shrieked in horror “It didn’t snow!” I may as well have screamed “fire!” for a ruckus ensued. We were scrambling with such a confusion, looking for shoes and clothes to wear. We never did that again.
By mid morning, a cold rain was falling. The wind blew and so the pines whispered. I put on a pot of “Great Northern” beans, for they take a long while to get done, if cooked slowly, as they ought to be. I baked bread too, for I always cook when there is any sort of storm. Since this was the first snow of the season -and it may well be the only snow, as well, I could not make “snow cream”. First snow is considered dirty, for it cleans the air. Fact or fiction, my elders drilled this in my head and so I must hope, it snows again.
I was delighted, that a favorite old movie was on. “It Happened on Fifth Avenue” is a sweet, “happily ever after story”. There was also “Jane Eyre” later on. I did a little housekeeping while the wind howled and the rain fell in big droplets, steadily. There wasn’t a bit of snow anywhere by mid afternoon. By three o’clock, I turned a lamp on. The wind and rain had increased and seemed to have joined forces.
Sunday, was full of fanfare. At times, I was busy, and at times I rested. I went over my Christmas list and “checked it twice”. The laundry basket is empty and the floors are clean. The burdens of last week had no bearing on me, this day. It was as if the wind had swept them far away, along with everything else, not nailed down. I felt as steadfast, as the old oak just outside the window, by the “morning table”. Suddenly, it dawned on me that storms of all sorts, pop up , full of a rage, loud and threatening. They rearrange all in their path – and though they may cause the oak to tremble, the old tree does not fall.
On Monday, there was a two hour delay for schools. I suspect the streets in towns were flooded. I was up at my usual time -early. The air was still, so the pines did not whisper, The mockingbird did not sing, either. A light rain fell and was the only sound breaking the silence of the morning. Hearing the steady tapping rhythm, of the raindrops on the leaves, was very calming and provoked a comfort, that could be felt, deeply. The delay afforded me the pleasure of listening to this earthly lullaby. Mornings are very important to me. In some way, they seem to affect the rest of the day, thus I do what I can to live my mornings pleasantly and peacefully. Some mornings, I awaken and will immediately, stump my toe and then predictably will spill coffee -on those days , I simply get still . . .and start over. It seems to break the spell, often. I have often wondered why things happen in threes, but they always do, hence I stop at a series of two, if allowed.
I came home and began my chores, as I always do. I do know I intend to pick out heavier clothes for tomorrow, for that cold rain is still falling. The misty drizzle of the early morning became downright rain while I was on the way to work and it has been raining ever since.
This week is already looking as if it will be a busy one too. Lyla is in a Christmas program at her preschool on Wednesday. I am packing tonight, to attend. Daddy has an appointment on Friday, so I want to be back home for that.
I have not been busy unpacking the seventy-five boxes roosting in every corner of the farmhouse. “Hope does spring eternal” for me, it seems. I have not yet formed much of a plan, but that will make itself known, at some point. The shock, of it all has dulled, to the point that I no longer feel curious about why this happened. I think we are all so used to having a sensible explanation for things. Not every answer is clear cut, though. Not every predicament will ever make total sense. This earthly journey has many a twist and many a turns, and sometimes we are in a blind spot.
We also, live at a time, that we are used to getting what we want, mostly quickly. I can not even imagine that my Mama waited til Christmas to get oranges, as a child. “Waiting” has become a lost art, but even in our modern world, sometimes we must just wait. I will be the first to say, that waiting is difficult and must be handled delicately. I wish that things had gone smoothly and as planned. So, I am also reminded, that we are not going to “like” all of the outcomes.
There I was on the brink of a new way to live, one I desired highly and the whole thing crashed like a fragile house of cards, all at once. (There is so much more to this story, besides a house sale, not going through. ) I really had tried to to do things right and make every accommodation, when needs arose and yet, it all happened anyway. I have muddled through all of this and have found myself quite juvenile. My daddy used to say “You are old enough to know better!” when I had committed some childish crime- or behaved poorly, when I didn’t get what I wanted. Those words ring true today, right now. I am old enough to know better.
So, in light of all this, I will wait with all of the grace, I can muster. The seventy-five boxes lurking here and there do not mock me, but instead implore me to have hope. Besides, my collection of treasure increases in abundance with each day that passes, with each step of the journey. My children have surrounded me and filled the wellsprings of my heart. . . friends have tended to me with diligence and loyalty, for I have no “fair weather” friends. My parents are as dependable as they were in my childhood. How can one complain, under such circumstances? I came across a mere “bump n the road” and needn’t be gloomy, which is really not a bit of fun. . . and it is Christmas. . . . and by golly . . . . it snowed!