Monday, December 1, 2008

First Snowfall

The pine and ash trees outside my study window are laden with snow; the landscape is cloaked in white. I sit here watching the light flakes that are still falling, and feel reverance for the beauty of it all.
This scene is a gift. To me, it is God's way of halting our unending busyness to reflect on the majesty of nature. Every season has moments like this, but this is the dearest to me.
I find it difficult to understand those who hate snow. Yes, I understand about shovelling, and driving on salt-laden roads, but, to me, those are the parts of winter that can test your patience or your stamina, but are endurable because of the beauty that surrounds you while you're laboring.
There are those who hate cold. I subscribe to the edict that you can always put on enough clothes to get warm. Too often, I notice the biggest complainers about the temperature are those in summer pants and a sweater when it's below zero outside! For them, I have no sympathy. And, if you really like warmth, we live in a large country that can accommodate you; try moving.
I lived in Florida for years and longed for the change of seasons I knew as a child. My parents always loved it there, I met my husband there, had my children there, and worked at a great job there. But, my heart was always in the Midwest, so I am delighted to be in Chicago, where the byword is, "If you hate the weather, wait 15 minutes."
Chicagoans, as a whole, love the cold. Why else would they be here? We watch the Bears play in a snowstorm, endure the winter winds off Lake Michigan, and slosh through unending piles of snow wherever we go. It's just a natural part of life for us. But we still hear weathercasters warning us of snowstorms as if we were all going to be worse off for that white stuff falling from above. We endure complainers who have nothing better to do than moan about the trials of living in snow. Yes, they are here, too. And why? As I said, Florida awaits if you're so inclined. You can have 80 degrees on Christmas Day.
For me, I'll put on my long underwear, warm clothes, muffler, coat, gloves and boots and venture out to delight in this wondrous addition to my life's experience. I'll have a snowball fight with my grandsons, go sledding, and build a snowman - after I shovel the driveway. Oh, yes, and I'll be wishing for a White Christmas while I'm at it.

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