Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow!!!

We got our first snowfall here in Southern Ontario today!  It's not much, and it's too warm for it to stick, but I'm still happy and cheerful about it. 

That first snowfall always puts me in a good mood--comes from growing up without it, I suppose.  I was eighteen before I saw my first real snow--12 inches that lasted all of a day and a half before it melted!  Before that, I'd seen an inch or so just twice in the South Texas town where I grew up, both times falling overnight and melting by noon the next day.  Over the next few years I lived in Austin, Texas, and I saw it again only a handful of times, none of it lasting for more than a day or two. And there was the one glorious time when I vacationed in New Mexico over the winter holidays--when we got to an area in the mountains with 2-3 feet of snow on the ground, I got out of the car and literally cried at the beauty of it.

We didn't get much snow in the Lower Mainland when we lived in BC, either, although the year it fell on Christmas' Eve was truly magickal.  Other than that, one year it snowed for almost two weeks straight--a heavy, wet snow that made it almost impossible to lift a full snow-shovel.  (Those more savvy than I informed me that it was too wet to be "proper" snow.)  But living there, we could drive to real snow--the Coast Mountains are just over an hour's drive away, and the "Ski Hills" are just outside of town.  They're called "hills" because they're so low--the lowest, Grouse Mountain, has an altitude of only 853 meters (2,800 feet.)  With places like the world class Whistler Ski Resort nearby (2182 m (7160') and 2240 m (7347'), respectively, that's LOW.)  Still, there's plenty of snow on those "hills"--it's where I first cross-country skied, where I learned about snow-tubes and toboggans, where the locals go for a quick afternoon's or evening's skiing.  It's not the same as looking out your window and seeing it fall, though.

Silicon Valley, California, was another place we didn't see a lot of snow.  None, to be exact.

And then we moved here, to Ontario.  I saw my first white Christmas here.  For 4-6 months out of the year I can look out my window on any given day and see snow on the ground, if not actually falling.  I can go out cross country skiing or snow shoeing any weekend I want to do so (and since I've been feeling better we might even be able to actually do it this year).  We even bought our own snowshoes about three years ago!

So the locals, who did grow up with it, tend to groan when it snows, but I cheer.  (Okay, if it's still snowing in May I may get a bit grumpy with it, but for a long, long while I love it.)

I don't even really mind shoveling it, that's how much I love it!

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