Saturday, February 23, 2013

Let it snow

Frozen in time, Nanaquaket is covered with snow and ice.
Forced out of a warm bed this morning, I dressed quickly and drove to my dental appointment.

Sitting in the dentist's chair, I had plenty of time to think about what I wanted to do next.

Consequently, I bolted and headed to Black Goose Café in Tiverton.

Looking out the window, I watched the wind caress the water and urge it beneath the ice that stretched across Nanaquaket Pond, while the rocks along the shore held onto the ice floes with tight fists.

Overhead the leaden skies portend imminent precipitation. Most likely, rain will spill forth because temperatures hover in the upper 30s; but eventually it will change into heavy, saturated snow.

For the third weekend in a row, we are awaiting the arrival of a snowstorm.

Nibbling on a wheat wrap and sipping tea, I think about how hardy we New Englanders are, accepting Nature’s vagaries with quiet resignation.

A couple of weeks ago, most of us were without electricity for days. What’s another few inches or more when we have already shoveled a few feet?

It’s better and more pleasant to adapt to our surroundings.

“Sunshine is delicious, rain is refreshing, wind braces us up, snow is exhilarating,” wrote Victorian writer John Ruskin. “There is really no such thing as bad weather, only different kinds of good weather.”

This kind of good weather sends New Englanders in droves to the supermarket for milk, bread and batteries.

My husband sighs as he looks at our depleted wood pile, and he wonders whether this late in the season we should invest in another cord. Once again, he fills the portable gas tank for the generator. The Dodge Ram with its heavy-duty plow is on standby.

Yet, spring is less than a month away.

“After Valentine’s Day we can really feel that winter is on the downgrade,” wrote New England writer Gladys Taber, who chronicled her days from her seventeenth-century Connecticut farmhouse. “A few more blizzards, perhaps, but definitely March will arrive. There will be a certain day when the air comes in over the hills with a different feeling. It’s an intangible thing, known only to folks who have had hard winters, and it is exciting and wonderful. One morning you poke your nose out, and you know all of a sudden that there will be another spring. You smell it in the air; and no matter how deep the snow is, you think nothing of it.”


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