Posted tagged ‘piles of snow’

“Cats have it all – admiration, an endless sleep, and company only when they want it.”

February 5, 2018

My Patriots lost the game. It was heartbreaking. The game, however, was what a Super Bowl should be and was exciting the whole way through. Brady being stripped of the ball was the end of hope. I did wear my new sweatshirt, now relegated to the closet. It is time to bring out my Red Sox garb.

Today is sunny. It would be warm if not for the wind. The top branches of the backyard pines are swaying. I stood outside for a while when I got the papers. The air smelled fresh, even sweet. It was quiet.

Last night it poured. The rain pummeled the roof. I loved it. I even wished I had a tin roof so the sound could surround me the same way it did in Ghana. The rain dissolved the snow. Only the smallest of piles are on the street corners where the plows had left them. They’ll be gone today.

Maddie is sleeping on my sweatshirt on the den table. She followed me to the kitchen meowing at me while I put my coffee on. She wanted a treat. I gave her some roast beef. I think Maddie is deaf. Even when she is near me she never responds to my voice. I could chalk that up to a cat being a cat, but she used to come when I called. She is the soundest sleeper.

When I was in the second grade, I became a brownie. My mother bought me my one piece brown uniform and a darker brown beanie with a dancing brownie on the front. The gold brownie pin was attached to the pocket. I loved wearing that uniform and could even wear it to school instead of my regular uniform when I had a troop meeting. Lots of my friends were brownies too. We all stood taller in our uniforms. We learned to hold up three fingers and recite the brownie pledge. It was always recited with great solemnity. I don’t remember what we did at meetings, but I remember marching in the parade every Memorial Day. It was my proudest moment as a brownie. I also remember telling my parents that everyone was out of step but me.

“This is the message of Christmas: We are never alone.”

December 4, 2015

Today is lovely. The air is still, the sky a light blue and the sun winter bright. It is in the 40’s, colder than yesterday but warmer than last night. It hasn’t yet been winter cold, the sort which takes your breath away. I’m glad for the reprieve.

When I watch TV programs supposedly taking place in winter, I always look for breath. In the one from the other night, a Hallmark Christmas movie, snow was in piles on the ground and the characters were bundled as if for an Arctic expedition but there was no breath. It was a fake, a movie winter, but I wasn’t taken in by the trappings of a Hollywood winter. I know cold.

I remember watching One Magic Christmas, a Disney movie where winter is real. Some key scenes take place at night. When the characters walk, you can hear the sound of crunching snow. Under the shine of the streetlights, you can see their breaths. Everywhere is snow: on the ground, piled on the sides of the road and in front of houses. It is really winter. I appreciated that.

In Bolgatanga, in Ghana, Christmas takes place during the harmattan when winds blow sand from the Sahara, the days are brutally hot and the nights cold. The first year there I was twenty-two and had never been away from home at Christmas. I tried not to think about it. My mother, however, saved the day. She sent me a package by air to guarantee a delivery before Christmas. The postage was a small fortune. My aunt helped fill the package and was nice enough to pay half of the postage. When I opened the box, it was filled with Christmas. I’ll never forget that box. It had a small artificial tree, some new ornaments and some from the family tree, cookie cutters, some sprinkles for the sugar cookies, small  stockings to hang from the fireplace paper also in the package and a few small wrapped presents to put under the tree.

I learned how to make sugar cookies that year. I spent Christmas Eve with friends at my house where we had a small party. We sang Christmas carols, ate Guinea fowl, yam chips, donuts and sweet balls of coconut. The sugar cookies were the big hit. I had even decorated them. That Christmas is one of my all time favorites.

“In skating over thin ice our safety is in our speed.”

February 7, 2015

I are prepared for the coming weather event even though it appears the Cape may be spared the foot or more of snow. The last forecast had us getting a mixture of snow and rain. I was glad at first but later I figured that just might be as bad as all snow, maybe even worse. I already live in an ice skating rink. My street is covered except for a couple of down to the pavement ruts. I have had to throw de-icer on Gracie’s steps several times, usually in the afternoon as it gets colder. Yesterday I had trouble getting out of my driveway and then the car had trouble getting up the small incline on the next street. I have to plan to stop when I’m on secondary roads so I won’t slide through the intersection. As it is I have to go half-way out into the main streets to look both ways, but today I am spared all that as I have nothing I need to do. I rejoice!

My father always went to work despite the snow though I do think he was home during a hurricane. I don’t remember him shoveling, but I know he did as the walkway was free of snow and his car was gone. My dad had a routine, and snow was no obstacle.

Back then sidewalks stayed covered and we mostly walked on the street. We’d go one by one as close to the piles of plowed snow as we could. When we heard the crunch of tires on the road behind us, we knew a car was coming so we’d stop to let it pass. The driver went by us ever so slowly.

The roads were never completely cleared of snow so sliding cars were common. My hill was so steep that it was easier to go around to the side road to avoid the bottom part of the hill then hope to get up the hill to our house from there. We were more than half-way up the hill, but the steepest part was still beyond us. I can remember the sounds of cars struggling over and over to get up that hill.

My dad always put his snow tires on the car sometime in November. That made winter official.


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