March 02, 2009

For children in the middle part of Alabama…

…there is nothing so tantalizing as snow. Just far enough north to know for a certainty that it could snow, if only it would snow. Just far enough south to make it an equal certainty that it will never snow this year, and probably won’t ever snow again EVER, and your life is ruined by the absence of powder stuff from the sky. And to make it worse, you remember the few times it DID snow, and in the deep recesses of your memory from when you were just a little kid (you know, three years ago), it was the bestest snow of all time, and you played outside for five weeks, and the snow was fifty feet high, and you made a snowman that weighed a billion tons.

And then, when you least expect it, after hardening yourself to never ever trust TV weathermen, you wake up one Sunday morning, on the first day of March (!), and the whole world went white.

And then your parents make you get up and go to church.

Because, despite the fact that the trees are white and there’s a good three inches of fat wet flakes on the ground, the roads are clear. So you have to go and sit through class and church, hoping against hope that once you come out of the building, it won’t have all melted away.

And it didn’t!

You can barely wait to get home, and you figure it won’t hurt if you get to go out to eat first, because at least now you can see the snow and you can tell it’s all still there.

BUT THEN—you come out of the restaurant, and the snow packed sidewalk you encountered when you first walked in is now dry and clear—and the snow’s dropping off the power lines! AGGGHHHH!

You get home, throw off your good clothes, get on something else you think will be warm, and run outside before it’s all gone.

Nothing like Southern kids in the snow. Clothes wet through and through, soggy cotton gloves, filthy jeans from flopping down in the melting wet snow which covers a now-sodden mush of red clay and grass, snowballs made of equal parts dirt, pine straw, grass, possibly some frozen dog poop (well, it looked like rocks, sorta), and snow, packed into ice as dense as depleted uranium, ready to make your siblings cry when it comes punching into their frozen noses. You wish it would snow forever--and then you begin to notice you can’t feel your face or fingers. You wonder if you’ve got frostbite like that guy in that TV show whose nose turned black and fell off. So you figure it might be good to go inside and eat popcorn and watch a movie and thaw out.

Maybe it’ll snow again tomorrow!

Posted by Terry Oglesby at March 2, 2009 11:12 AM

Three inches? Up here in the northern climes of Alabama, we got 1/2 inch which was gone by the time Church let out at 11:00.

Mind you, I am not complaining. I long since got over thinking snow was good.

Posted by: Larry Anderson at March 2, 2009 02:23 PM

Yep--it was a nice deep bed up until about noon, and then started melting quick. Add this onto the deluge we got toward the end of last week, and the whole backyard was one big bog of Woodstock proportion. Without the hippies.

I thought it was a darned nice snow--no blocked roads, no power outages, no dummies out practicing their bootlegger turns in the street--just moron weather reporters on the teevee from dawn til dusk.

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at March 2, 2009 05:49 PM

Well, I have to admit, I intended to send you an email this AM just to see if your kids found enough snow to make snow angels in the yard. I saw the reports and figured the kids were having a blast.

Posted by: Nate at March 2, 2009 10:46 PM

They did indeed--they stayed out close to an hour, and I think they're probably still shivering.

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at March 3, 2009 08:21 AM

We got your snow delayed by a day, falling overnight Sunday. The kids woke up Monday to about five inches in Mayberry and no school. I took a half-day off of work, intending to take them sledding. They bolted out of the house at about 9 am, giving me time to make some hot cocoa for the thermos. After about twenty minutes we got the usual knock on the screen door: I wanna come in!

First good snow we've had in years, and they wimp out. I ended up yelling at the 11 year old out of frustration. Anywho, by about 10:30 they were ready to head back out for some sledding, and a good time was had by all, especially Mom who got to stay home all by herself. And no, the Big Tater did not risk a trip down the hill, as I didn't want to mess up my nice jeans before work. Plus there were only two sleds for three kids. And the hill was steep. And other stuff ...

Posted by: Marc V at March 3, 2009 10:42 PM

"Other stuff," none of which, I'm SURE, had anything to do with wimping out! ;)

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at March 4, 2009 10:26 AM

We got nothing but then again we ahve no kids at home or hills, either for that matter.

Posted by: jim at March 4, 2009 11:58 AM

Yes, but you've got those pesky outside steps that don't work well when covered in frozen water.

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at March 4, 2009 12:45 PM

Yes we do-- and i passed the anniversary of that event in January. It did get me to stop smoking and also to avoid going outside in the winter.

Posted by: jim at March 5, 2009 11:57 AM

It's the ultimate win-win scenario! Or pretty close, at least.

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at March 5, 2009 12:59 PM

Late to the party. Mainly because we got all that snow you people wanted. And I would happily have passed it on to you.

Close to a foot and a half, and two days of frigid temps to follow. No thanks, folks, even if the kids took sleds to the neighbor's "hill" (maybe it's 5 feet all told) for 2 hours.

Posted by: skinnydan at March 6, 2009 08:37 AM

Left unwritten are the reactions to snow after one grows up--for some reason, I no longer have the overwhelming urge to be snowed in the house for days on end. Or to even be bothered with the thought of it. I'm just glad this one didn't turn out to be like the one we had in March of '93.

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at March 6, 2009 01:40 PM