Weather Here

17 02 2008

I was walking home today from the library appreciating the beauty of a Midwest winter. I’m one of the first to bitch and moan about the cold, the slush, the snow and everything else. I like the summer more, simply because it’s easy to get out and do things. I can stay more active.

We broke the all-time record for most snowfall in Wisconsin, last set in the 70s. Since then (about a week ago), we’ve had about three more snowfalls. Late last night, it started raining, and the rain froze to everything. If you’ve never seen freezing rain before, it’s fantastic. Imagine everything outside covered in a half inch of ice.

I stepped out the door this afternoon, and I heard crackling. The wind was blowing the tree branches, and the ice was fracturing in thousands of places at once. On my walk home tonight, I looked up. In the orange glow of the sodium vapor lamps, all the trees looked like some cross between antlers and icicles. When a wind gust came up, instead of whipping, the branches swayed rigidly together.

After that, I smelled the smoke of a wood fire. I felt and heard the crunch of the snow, frozen in the tread of the tires that had run over it before. I stomped through five inch puddles of slush and enjoyed the cold air in my lungs. I remembered what it was like playing in the snow as a child. I smiled.

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