It’s happened all my life and I’m getting a wee bit longer in the tooth than I’ve ever been. Oh, I hear the moans and groans already.
I hear the laments and the “Oh God no!” bursting forth in whines and whimpers. It has something to do with weather forecasters who seem to take glee in their announcements …”Well, folks. It’s going to snow!”
I’m like a kid now, but even when I was a kid, I got so wired with joy when snow was predicted my mom threatened me with dire circumstances. We lived at air bases in the South my wee girl years and I never saw snow until we stayed with my grandparents in New York City while my dad, an Air Force officer was overseas getting us a place to live.
Snow fall in New York is something else. It comes down quickly and turns Central Park into a winter wonderland. It makes ice skating at Rockefeller Center magical. It makes everything clean and pristine.
It makes parades fun, too. I sat on my Grandpa Colligan’s shoulder watching the Macy’s Day parade doing my level best to catch some flakes on my tongue. I did and even had some flakes on my eye lashes, too I don’t remember being cold.
We left New York in a snowstorm. My grandfather drove us in a maroon Kaiser Manhattan to the boat docks and when I caught a glimpse of our ocean liner behind the falling snow, I was in awe. It was huge and most of the people boarding spoke Italian or French. I was fascinated.
Our destination was supposed to be Germany, but we were going to Morocco instead. Morocco is on the outskirts of the Sahara Desert. It snowed in our little Moroccan village for the first time in over 50 years. I remember grown men and women along with children out dancing in the streets. What fun!
After Morocco and Barksdale AFB in Louisiana, we were stationed at Schilling AFB outside of Salina, Kansas. Kansas was a bit of a shock. Few trees grew out of the soil dried out by constant winds. Only Bermuda grass grew there for lawns and tough Johnson grass on the prairies, but no matter. I loved it there. One of the winters was particularly snowy.
It seems snow was on the ground from mid-October until mid-April. Snow was drifted up to our windows and for a brief time, we couldn’t get out the doors. I remember my dad climbing out of a top smaller, window and sliding down the snowbank. I thought it was cool that he had to climb out a window to get out of the house. He shoveled away the snow so we could get out.
We kids dug tunnels in the snow and pretended they we igloos. The thing is, it was frigidly cold and the tunnels kept us warmer. The wind would blow so much our faces felt frozen. They might have gotten that way, but my mom always called us in. She grew up in New York and knew cold and snow. She’d make snow cream and it was such a treat.
I remember a magical snow when we lived in Knoxville, Tennessee. My dad had retired from the Air Force and was working for the Post Office. It was Christmas Eve and it had started snowing. He called my mother and told her he may have to walk home. My sister, brother, and I were so excited that it was snowing. It was one of those beautiful snows, the kind that sticks on everything and makes old wooden boxes, wagons, and left out garden tools take on a whole new look. It was indeed magical. When it was all said and done, Daddy made it home safely and we all drank hot chocolate by the fireplace.
In Georgia, the most monumental snow of all was the Blizzard of ’93. On March 12, yes March, the atmosphere set up to bring in a blizzard throughout the Southeast. Interstate 75 was at a standstill. People were stranded. Power was out everywhere. The South was not used to this kind of weather.
Here’s the thing, I grew up learning how to make the best of everything no matter where our family lived. This is what I did. We didn’t have power, but we had a Grandpa Fisher Bear wood stove.
I cooked on it and made the best steak I’ve ever eaten. That wood stove kept us warm. We got my husband’s Flexible Flyer sled out from his childhood and had a ball. That sled was just so good. It glided over three feet of snow on hillsides and gave us memories to tell for years to come.
No, I don’t really want another blizzard, but I want snow, glorious softly falling snow.