[Backyard signpost, Old Saybrook, Connecticut, 2014]
“Are you all right?” out-of-town friends and family anxiously ask as my tiny part of the world shivers and shudders under the weight of seventy-two inches of snow!
Yes. We have heat and light and plenty of shovels and a tenant who’s shouldered more than his share of the digging-out. We can walk to a supermarket half a block a way; the post office and the bank and the library and our Quaker meeting are conveniently near by. We’re fine. So far.
Here’s what is unsettling: that the extra time it now takes to get dressed to go outside, and the need, several times a day, to dig out/shovel, and the slow, laborious slogging through canyons of snow and mincing cautiously over ice, and canceled meetings because there’s no place for anyone to park, and being told more storms are expected in the next couple of days; it feels as if, from now on, my life will always be this way. This harsh and dramatic reality is reality! In perpetuity.
One huge reason? Much as I try, much as I know that the days will get longer and that spring will come, I cannot imagine the snow melting. There’s so, so much of it! And that profound lack of imagination brings with it a peace as deep and as silent as the snow.