I woke up early on this last day of classes with Dan sleeping peacefully next to me, Shiva snuggled into a ball my lap, and sweet Sophie snoring contentedly at my side. We were supposed to have had some rain come through last night that would turn to a light dusting of snow, but nothing that would stick. Sometimes Mother Nature has other plans.
I came downstairs in the quiet darkness, opened the sunporch door and looked out to find that we had snow- and it actually appeared to be coming down pretty heavily in big fluffy flakes. I put down my yoga mat and did my practice while watching the sun shyly peek over the horizon at the gently falling snow. There is nothing like ‘snow quiet’; it blankets the land and muffles normal everyday sounds, leaving you feeling like you are wrapped in a wonderful cocoon. I love it.
Just a light dusting early in the morning…
Normally in Birmingham (or most anywhere in the South), the city shuts down at even the hint of a snowflake. While our friends to the north often (rightfully so) laugh at us, we aren’t prepared to deal with hilly streets that are covered in even a small amount of snow or ice- and most of us have never been trained to drive in winter weather…something that can quickly become a dangerous combination.
I went into school to give some playing exams and teach lessons, and the snow continued to fall. And fall. Surely it will stop- they said a ‘dusting’ at most. Our world became white and I looked out of my office window to see the students enjoying the novelty.
The snow showers continued, getting heavier and sticking more and more. I started feeling that little prickle of concern one feels who lives on a steep hill and remembers colleagues getting stuck in the music building for a couple of nights during the last surprise winter weather event. It was time to head home…while I still could.
With a little scary moment on the hilly street closest to the alley leading to my garage, I made it home just in time. Now came the true challenge- getting down my very steep driveway with clarinets on my back, a computer bag filled with work, and my purse, without slipping and falling…the same hill I took a bad fall on last January. I squatted low and inched my way down, slipping a couple of times, but maintaining my balance in the end. Success!
Now, I’m not going to lie; as a gal who grew up in Florida and lived for nine years in the beautiful mountains of Western North Carolina, I have a fascination and love of snow. Always have. Here in Birmingham, snow is a rarity, so when it comes, I feel like a kid again- a kid with wrinkles, but a kid nonetheless. My husband is just the same. The world as we know it is suspended for a while; instead of the very busy Friday I had planned, it was suddenly a snow day, one free of commitments or worries. Dan and I did the sensible thing (insert note of sarcasm) and bundled up to head out and take photos of our slippery surprise winter wonderland.
We stopped to just listen to the snowfall and enjoy the moment…
We carefully made our way down the long flight of stairs…
I love our funky old home in all seasons, but it is never more beautiful than when it is blanketed in fresh snow.
We enjoyed every bit of the day as the snow fell, talking, napping, practicing, baking cookies (eating far too many of them fresh out of the oven), and making a nice dinner after enjoying one of Dan’s Rusty Nails by the sunporch fireplace. We decided to continue the adventure and bundled up once again for a nighttime inspection of the snowy landscape. It was worth the cold nose and frozen fingers.
How grateful I have been for the out-of-the-blue gift of this snow day to remind us to be kids at heart again, to relish in the freedom of a break from routine here at this crazy time of the semester. I feel energized and ready to power through the busy week of exams, juries, and clinics that begin on Monday, and excited for the Christmas holiday that still awaits.
Oh- and I got to do yoga this morning with this as my view…Even for one day- what a gift.