Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Bless the Weather

I guess the nicest thing about the snow squall that visited yesterday was that it didn't happen Sunday in the midst of the New York City Marathon. My sister Kara's husband, who actually has a name (since that title gets cumbersome) Russ, ran and was marvelous (I couldn't run that distance or at that pace if someone were chasing me with a bat) and, by extension (friends of acquaintances), I know a few other people who ran as well.

Edison Pena, who would have easily had the winning entry in the Chilean "What I Did Over My Summer Vacation" essay contest (were one to have been held), finished his race to put an exclamation point on a year that has been anything but declamatory. I don't think the snow would have bothered him, except to wonder where the rest of it was.

Me, not so much. I've lived here for nineteen years. I have the almanac and the snow blower and ice melt and the windshield scrapers in every color and flavor in the rainbow. I have one or more calendars and am keenly aware of what time of the year it is where I am and what usually happens around here when we get here.

Still, when I opened my eyes shortly after three AM, I could hear the persistent tap-tap of something harder than Dylan's Precipitation falling and hoped it was crustacean body parts against the window, but knew it wasn't. I stopped being a fan of snow right after I stopped having days off from school because of it so yeah, it's been a while since I've smiled when it happens.

When Pat and Mike were much younger, we used to mush down to Buckingham School (long since closed) with what seemed like half of Norwich to sled down the hill alongside the playscape and the basketball court. Someone had erected a fence at the foot of the hill, luckily, since kids would get up quite a head of steam and barrel right across the sidewalk and onto Washington Avenue (actually a rather busy state road) and wind up as the hood ornament on somebody's 1968 Terraplane Turbo Diesel as they made their way to the casinos. The other half of Norwich went to the Golf Course where, among the hills and dales, there were some primo saucer sliding sites.

We didn't really have a lot of snow on Monday-we had a large amount of slush, truth to tell-gets all your clothes wet and the sled blades get rusty real fast. I went into work as normal (or as close as I ever am to normal) and I suspect there were no kids, or adults for that matter, off to try out the sledding places. I don't imagine this was our only opportunity this winter, or even for this week. Bless the weather that brought you to me. Curse the storm that takes you away.
-bill kenny

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