Winter, Snowfall & Memories

I woke up this morning and it was snowing. I walked around while at work today and it was snowing. I just came inside from playing in the snow. And it was still snowing. It looks like there is at least a half a foot of snow on the ground.  I drove to and from work and I wasn’t worried or complaining about being out in this.  I was actually enjoying it.  I guess it reminds me of my childhood. Also seeing your everyday landscape instantly transformed by a blanket of snow just affects your perspective.As I was thinking about the snow, the giddiness got me thinking about some of my favorite snow related memories.

  • We lived in Illinois for a few years when I was in elementary school.  We got snow every year.  I had the full ensemble to protect me from the elements.  Snow pants, jacket, gloves, boots and hat.  I felt like the Michelin man or the StayPuff Marshmallow man every time I had to wear it.  One year, the brilliant school administrators thought it would be fun to send us kids to the YMCA to take swimming lessons in the dead of winter.  The warm water of the pool was great but then getting back into all those clothes while still damp and then riding on a chilly bus back to the school was not very pleasant.

  • Another memory from Illinois was building an igloo with the girls down the street.  We finished building it and my brother decided to go inside and check it out.  I don’t remember what the rationale was, but the rest of us decided to jump on top of it and it collapsed on him.  I think he still has PTSD from that event.  I know because he won’t let me forget it.

  • Another memory was slightly more unsettling and random. I had just graduated from college and was in Louisiana.  We never really got snow.  It was more ice camouflaged as snow.  I was driving to a friend’s New Year’s Eve party and it was lightly snowing.  My mother didn’t want me to drive my old car so I was using hers.  I was driving slowly and being careful when out of nowhere the car started to spin.  Not a fast spin but I was out of control. I remember starting to react and remembering that fast reactions often make everything worse. I remember just putting my hands in my lap and just waiting for the car to come to a stop.  I spun just past a drainage ditch and gently rolled backwards off the road.  The embankment was just steep enough I couldn’t get out.  Someone stopped by and called a tow truck.  After they got the car hooked up, the tow truck guys informed me that since I didn’t have cash they would have to impound my car. They offered to drop me off at a nearby home. It was next to a church and their rationale was that the family must be part of the church and would help get me home.  It turns out the man’s parents lived just down the road from my mother.  So after waiting a few hours for the weather to clear up, this nice couple drove me home.  I’ll leave the story of getting the car out of impound for another day.

  • The last story that comes to mind was not a winter memory but still related to snow.  The summer of my freshman year I was a summer missionary in Montana.  I traveled around helping out various churches.  One weekend we drove over to Yellowstone National Park.  We drove through the Bear Tooth Mountains and we stopped so all the Southerners could play in the snow.  I have a picture of me standing in a field covered in snow in short sleeves in July.

Winter Snowfall