Saturday, December 6, 2008

Flakes are Flying!

I love a woodpile and I suppose I grow even fonder of them when they begin to get covered with snow. Snuggled in that icy coat is the promise of heat. Thoreau (and others) said logs heat twice: once when they are cut and again when they are burned. As I cut these myself - along with my brother - and stacked them here myself, and will likely burn them before the winter is over, I know the true meaning of his words.

All the day the snow has been flying. It's light, to be sure, but it reminds us clearly that winter days are here. When we first woke, the ground was covered with a thin layer and throughout the daylight hours the flakes have been flying in fits and starts. It's a good way for winter to begin - a little hesitant. And yet the wind that carries these snow showers means business. It burrows beneath the layers of coats and causes you to rush to the next warm spot.

The pampas grass beside the henhouse had a short season to flower; it was quickly blasted by a heavy frost. And yet, protected as the spot is between henhouse and pines, this particular group of grass did manage flower heads and then seeds. Now those same flowers gather snow and shake it off in showers of their own when the wind finds them.

This ragweed hangs low with the snow it's collected and its days of bothering me with sneezing fits and runny eyes are over. Later in the winter, when the snow begins to melt, I'll cut the meadow with a scythe and it will start anew in April.
But that is a long way off and not quite in my ability to imagine yet. Walking from the car to New Lebanon's Christmas in the Village craft show at Dixie High School, proved difficult for the icy parking lot. Mom hung on to one arm and we counter-balanced the wind. Then a stop at the library proved equally challenging.
It's good to be inside for the day even though it's only 3 p.m. I'm already thinking of tonight when I can switch on the electric blanket and enjoy a warm bed. Such simple pleasures are made the more appealing by the snowflakes which are flying now.