Monday, April 26, 2010

Journal Jar: Snow as a child

Did it snow where you lived as a child? What kinds of things did you do when it snowed?

Now that spring has finally graced Idaho (hope I'm not jinxing it) I feel like I can answer this question without ire. :)

I grew up fifteen miles from where I live now. And, yes, it snowed where I lived. Sometimes a lot. Sometimes not. I have pictures of snowdrifts twice as high as me and I can remember many brown, ugly winters. The snowfall in Idaho is unpredictable. But you can always bet they'll be cold and long.

I think the snow is beautiful and I love nothing more than a white Christmas and downy drifts of glistening snow. I love the peaceful feeling that only comes with a fresh snowfall at night. There's magic in it. Romance. I even love hibernating during a nasty blizzard. Heck, I don't even mind driving in the snow. But the one thing I don't care for is playing in the snow.

Living within a couple hours drive of many world-renowned ski resorts, you'd think I would've picked up on a little winter fun. Not so. I went snow boarding my first (and only) time just five years ago. It was fun, don't get me wrong, and I'm glad I did it, but I obviously haven't been dying to get back to the slopes. I've also gone cross-country skiing a couple times. It's more frustrating than not - I can't help but feel like Bambi trying to cross that frozen pond with my skis getting all crossed and falling down every couple of yards. But the views are spectacular.

As a kid, I played in the snow more. I made snowmen and forts. I played in drifts until I couldn't feel my feet. I distinctly remember a particular snowman. Or, rather, a snow bunny. My friend Faye and I had spent a Saturday afternoon molding and sculpting this ice creature and we were pretty pleased with it. Then a boy from across the street, Adam, came over and destroyed it. And we were destroyed too. I imagine we went into my house to cry and fuss. I don't remember exactly. But somehow my mother found out about what Adam did.

She marched herself across the street, knocked on the neighbors' door and tracked Adam down. She demanded that he rebuild our snow bunny. She was quite livid, and quite embarrassing. But underneath the "embarrassment," I'm glad she did it. I'm glad she stuck up for me, even over something so meaningless and transitory as a snow bunny.

And I remember watching, rather guiltily, as a disinterested Adam and his dedicated father rebuild the snow bunny in my front yard.

I haven't done anything in the snow in quite awhile. I don't even own a proper pair of snow boots or snow gloves. Or even a proper snow coat. (Hey, wool pea coats are warm and fashionable. Who needs to look like a plasticized marshmallow in the winter?) But I know that in a short while - possibly even this coming winter - I will be introducing my child to the wonders of a snow-covered world. I better get shopping.

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