It occurs to me we need to expand our winter weather vocabulary. Meteorologists are beginning to repeat themselves. Snow and cold, Snow and cold. They have this awkward look of bearers of bad news.
I know it's hard sometimes, so hard. I miss my husband, his warmth and humor and help with the snow shoveling. But this is not the time for weeping for what was, and what is. Those tears will only freeze on your face in the wind. What's the wind chill now, anyway? Are we close to Absolute Zero?
We need more words for winter, and for snow. Subzero. Wind chill factor. Blizzard conditions? Swear words come to mind, but let's be more inventive. Do we have 100 words for snow?
Today, more snow has fallen, maybe 4-5 inches. Once again, a world without sidewalks and roads. I'm the only one out shoveling.
Into this scene comes a neighbor down the street, walking her black dog. She's wearing black snowpants, like me. Her winter hat could be Radiant Orchid.
Her smile is radiant. Her dog, a husky mix, loves this weather. She stops, we talk about the snow and how much has fallen. She's already shoveled her place, her neighbors. She'll do her whole block. Why not? She shovels some sidewalk for me, while I play with her dog in the snowdrifts.
Thank you shoveling angel! Thank you for showing me how to shovel snow with a joyful heart, open to the beauty of this moment.
The snow is powder, light as air. It's a delight to shovel it. This is the snow that skiers dream of. It's too light for making snowmen, maybe, but why not?
There is more to snow than shoveling. There is more to winter than the polar vortex. There are many words for snow.
For example, there's a dusting of snow, good-packing snow, snowman snow, and snowball-throwing snow
Snow blown from snow-blowers
Downhill racing snow.
Brushing snow off windshields before work on Monday snow. Heading home on Friday snow.
City snow, and country snow.
Snow falling off the roofs of buildings. Snow falling off branches.
Snow of cats looking out the window
Snow of big dogs, romping.
Hiroshige snow, snows of Kilimanjaro, snows of yesteryear
The snow of demons, howling.
The snow of drifting and blowing. Snow of tires, grinding. The snow of hazardous white-out conditions.
Heart-attack snow. Lake-effect snow.
Snow of lovers meeting.
Snow of winter, alone.
The crunch of snow. The squeak of snow in subzero temperatures.
Snow at night, almost bright as day....
These are just a few examples. Why stop at 100 words? How many more can you come up with?
Have you ever wondered about the Inuit words for snow? You can read more about it, here.
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