Perspective

As many of you already know, I have been a southern girl for most of my adult life. I moved to Memphis when we were newly married. We raised children, and now, our children are raising our grandchildren in the south. I have lived in Memphis and have seen less than a dozen good snowfalls in the last forty years. By saying a good snowfall, I mean a snowfall covering the top of the grass blades. Over the years, I have loved even the prospect or potential forecast for snow!
The thought of snow has always sent visions of pristine white beautiful landscapes, sloppy wet snowball fights, shedding down bunny hills, building snow people, hot chocolate, and Campbell’s Chicken Noodle Soup dancing through my imagination.
In Memphis, the general population expects a holiday for even a little snow sticking to the roadways. Even the school board chooses to opt for a preemptive strike against the weather and close the schools in advance of potential “bad” weather. I have seen several instances where the children are given a holiday for wet, rainy roads.
Children and adults alike trek outside for some snowtime fun on those rare occasions when snow actually covers the grass. Grass-filled snowmen dot the neighborhood landscape, and no one is exempt from the threat of an inbound snowball or two.
So, for me, my perception of snow has always been, well, fun! When I have seen pictures of snow-covered ground presented by my northern neighbors, I have been more than a little envious.
I have always thought that my northern neighbors never worried about receiving snow. I felt that the snow somehow magically melted instantaneously from roads and sidewalks!
This is the first winter I have lived up north during my adult life, staying in northern Indiana. I have been praying for snow! Lots of snow! So, when the weatherman predicted Winter Storm Landon, I was ecstatic last week! I dreamt about all of the beautiful snow people I would build.
To me, having twelve inches of white, fluffy stuff fall from the sky all at once was like having a gift sent from heaven. It was anything but a pleasant surprise to my sister, who has lived in Indiana her whole adult life. I was slightly taken aback that Sis did not share my enthusiasm.
My fairytale perceptions of snow-white bliss have been replaced by the harsh reality of snowy cold winter weather. First of all, snow does not magically melt from the roads and sidewalks, and northern folks do get a little bit concerned about a winter storm. When snow falls very quickly to the ground over several hours, a fierce competition develops between mother nature and the road crews fervently trying to clean up her slippery mess. Therefore, before the big mother nature/road crew fight, people scurry to the grocery store and clean the shelves just in case the road crew loses the battle.
Currently, there are twelve inches of snow on the ground, and I have yet to see even one snowman! I haven’t even been accosted by a snowball. Fact is, I have not built one snowman, and I have not managed to torpedo a snowball at anyone. I still do like building snowmen, and I still like throwing snowballs. However, I have not engaged in either activity simply because the snow won’t pack because it’s been too cold outside. I have tested the snow several times over the last few days just to see if it would form a good snowball. No dice. The snow is too dry and too powdery!
Also, The snow is heavy to walk through, and where it has been shoveled, it feels like walking through a sea of baking soda as it squeaks under my feet.
Today, the temps will rise to thirty-seven degrees, and so possibly, I might be able to go outside and play. Perhaps my perspective will shift again, and my deep-seated love for the fluffy white stuff will return. If so, tonight I will go to bed dreaming of a very white February.

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