Tuesday, February 10, 2009


I'm multi-tasking this morning. I'm adding descriptions to family photos on my family tree site, recording episodes of "Little Bear" on a VCR tape for Addison, and watching the snow fall gently outside the window.

The snow is gentle and light, sticking to roofs and trees, and a little bit on the ground, but melting quickly on streets and sidewalks. It's so pretty when it falls and I do love it, although by noon it will turn to rain. We may have light snow again tomorrow morning, but then it will also turn quickly to rain.

In the 14 years I've lived in Oregon, we've had more snow this year than ever before, a sign, some say, of climate change. Whatever the reason, it's a nice change from our usual winter weather of rain, rain, and more rain.

It puts me in mind of the first time I saw snow.

As a Florida native, growing up in Tampa and Lake Wales, snow was never a part of my life. I do recall one winter when snow fell briefly, but melted mid-air. That was a big disappointment to me, since I read all the books that talked about kids playing in snow and was intensely disappointed in the eternal sunshine of life in Florida!

In 1964, however, I lived briefly in Portsmouth, VA. On a winter day around December 1st, I looked out to see snow! I was so excited! I put on my heavy coat and went outside and stood in it for about 15 minutes, marveling as it brushed my face and landed on my coat, melting too quickly to really count. But it was beautiful and I was young enough at 17 to be enthralled by the experience.

In subsequent years, we traveled to Oregon and Washington and I was treated to snow in the mountains, but never again to see it fall. Until 1991 when Ben and I lived for a fall and winter in Indianapolis.

That year winter came early - in October, I believe. Of course everyone blamed me for wanting it so badly, but I didn't care! Ben and I got up early in the morning and went outside and had a snowball fight. My 11-year-old son was as excited as I was and we laughed ourselves silly with the excitement of it all!

That afternoon as I gave a co-worker a ride home, the snow started falling again! She was telling me a story when I interrupted and said, "It's snowing!" She continued with her story, and I, in my excitement, repeated, "It's snowing!" "Yes," she replied, "I see it." "But," I exclaimed, "you don't understand: It's snowing and I'm driving in it!"

With exaggerated patience, she looked at me and said, "Cheryle, I'm from Buffalo, NY, and this just doesn't even count as snow!" I laughed and she continued with her story.

Perspective counts, but it shouldn't count for too much. Especially when it's snowing!

1 comment:

  1. I'm smiling while reading this. Perspective does count because right now no one in Wisconsin wants to see snow again for a long time, although we reserve a kind of snobbery toward warm climate people who freak at driving in an inch of snow.

    I must admit that I would find it challenging to have rain, rain, and more rain -- I want sunshine, sunshine, and more sunshine.

    Enjoy your snow, Cheryle. :)