37, college grad, 2x married, one son, one stepdaughter, four cats, one idiot dog, one very small house and small garden.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

The Serenity of Snow

It snowed the second day we were here in Cincinnati. Just an inch or so, but what a difference it made. The snow is so clean and pure looking that it confers an aura of saintliness that may or may not describe the denizens of this fair city. Snow is the one natural thing that makes everything look beautiful. There's just one problem.

It's bloody cold out there.

Connor doesn't seem to mind the cold, and provided I keep moving, I'm okay in it as well. In fact, given that I am starting down the road toward The Big Change, and hot flashes are now a daily fact of life, the cold is sometimes my ally. Connor loves the idea of being able to go sledding for large parts of the year. But sledding is perhaps a misnomer for what we have been doing.

Mudding might better describe it. We take the red plastic toboggan from my mother's basement down the street to the park. We find a suitably large hill. Connor positions himself in the sled, and I give him a push. As he goes down the hill, the sled compacts the snow into the grass and dirt, leaving a wide trail. So when he comes back to the top we have to move along the ridge of the hill to a clean spot. Then he wants me to go down with him. Our combined weight digs the sled into the earth and pushes up a mound of mud...and of course because I am steering challenged, we wipe out into this giant mud clod. We trudge back to the house, our cheeks bright red with the cold and our clothing dark brown with the mud. But I don't mind; a little laundry is a small price to pay for that kind of fun.

And it was educational for Connor. He is the only kid I can think of who has now had the experience of mudding down a large hill with his mother gripping his arms for dear life screaming, "Oh, shit! Oh, shit!" right in his ear. I thought he was going to pee his pants he was laughing so hard. Fortunately he did not, because I'm not sure I'd know what to do with frozen pee.

The best part of the snow is being able to watch it from the window, hot cocoa in hand, and a fire blazing behind me. They aren't kidding when they say snow brings a hush to the world. I think the hush comes from thousands of humans struck suddenly silent as they watch the beauty of the falling crystals. You can't buy that kind of serenity.


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