Write about anything
My science-minded brain loves weather. I could listen to The Weather Channel in the background for hours. In fact, I am while writing today! Over the next 12 hours, our forecast shows rain, freezing rain, sleet, and/or snow. It all depends on the amount of hot air sitting on top of cold air. While I find the weather intellectually stimulating, I rarely enjoy going outside in the winter weather mess. Michigan has had some snow fall everyday this week. The other day I actually got excited about the snow for the first time in ages. The snow was light, fluffy, and sparkled in the sun. When discussing the weather with a friend who just moved from North Carolina, she described the snow looking like “somebody sprinkled that fake movie glitter snow everywhere.” That got me thinking: When did falling snow become such a dreadful occurrence?
In elementary school, I remember thinking, “Yes! Snow is coming!” I remember getting up extra early to see if school was canceled. In the rare case that it was, my siblings and I would immediately suit up to brave the outdoors. We would spend the whole day throwing snowballs, climbing, building snow forts, and even shoveling the driveway. One particular blizzard, we all went outside late at night just to try to catch snowflakes on our tongues. In 6th and 7th grade, it snowed during basketball practice – enough for sledding. My middle school teammates and I tracked down the janitor to acquire some trash bags to use as sleds. Until the other day’s ‘glitter snow’, sledding down the hill in trash bags was the last time I can remember looking outside and thinking “Yay! SNOW!”
As an adult, things are different when the snow arrives. I set my alarm extra early to account for the additional time it will take to get to work. When I get outside, I have to shovel out, then brush, scrape, and defrost my car. After the car is finally warm, I have to brave the roads hoping not to end up in the ditch. I dread the inevitable soaking of at least one clothing item and changing my boots when I get to work. I realized I have been focusing too much on the winter weather hassles. What about the unique calmness that happens while it’s snowing? What about the way snow glistens under the streetlights at night? What about the snowflakes catching in your hair? What about the snowfall making you want to curl up under a soft blanket with a good book and hot chocolate?
The snow season only lasts for a few months. For the rest of winter, I will consider the snow to be a mother nature’s version of a glittery blanket.
Bridget Scoville is a pharmacist with a scholarly interest in the kidneys. She is completing a post-graduate research fellowship at the University of Michigan Ann Arbor. When she’s not working on research, Bridget can be found running, swapping stories over coffee, laughing with friends during dinner, or youth mentoring through Big Brothers Big Sisters.