Reub's journey

01 February 2011

No snow, none at all

This is a map released some minutes ago by NASA, depicting the gigantic blizzard that is swamping most of the US as I sit here sipping tea on a Tuesday evening. My son and his wife in Chicago are listening to the wind howl and the strange drama of snow thunder rumbling furiously above them. Tomorrow is a snow day there because it's coming down at a rate of 2 inches per hour tonight. The last time the Chicago school system called a snow day it was in 1999! 

Despite all of the danger and inconvenience, I am pretty jealous of them. Snow days make us realize that we aren't always in control, and that sometimes it isn't a bad thing for everybody to just stay home. The sudden disruption is fun. Ben and Chrystal get to make  cinnamon rolls, put them in the fridge, sleep late, and bake them in the morning. That is, if they have electricity...

Meanwhile if you look at the above map, it is missing a view of the extreme northwest of the US, where I live, and where it was so bright you needed sunglasses today. The NASA blizzard map is much more impressive without the states of Oregon and Washington where we will have blue skies  all week. People here always want everybody else to think we have bad weather, but naaah, it just isn't true.

We have had no snow in the Willamette valley this year, at least coming from the midwest as I do, nothing that I would count as such. The 1/4 inch in November didn't count, even if they did over-react and call it a "snow day."

I guess I'll have to draw vicarious pleasure from the huge storm that everybody else is experiencing. If I shut my eyes I really can imagine it. To help with the imagery I think I'll re-read a beloved snow-poem that was one of the first things I ever put on Ed and Reub, exactly 2 years ago:

Snow, Aldo
 by Kate DiCamillo.

Once, I was in New York,
in Central Park, and I saw
an old man in a black overcoat walking
a black dog. This was springtime
and the trees were still
bare and the sky was
gray and low and it began, suddenly,
to snow:
big fat flakes
that twirled and landed on the
black of the man's overcoat and
the black dog's fur. The dog
lifted his face and stared
up at the sky. The man looked
up, too. "Snow, Aldo," he said to the dog,
"snow." And he laughed.
The dog looked
at him and wagged his tail.

If I was in charge of making
snow globes, this is what I would put inside:
the old man in the black overcoat,
the black dog,
two friends with their faces turned up to the sky
as if they were receiving a blessing,
as if they were being blessed together
by something
as simple as snow
in March.


  1. I love how snow looks, but the cold really gets to me.

  2. I, too, love a good blizzard. We had three last year, so I'm trying not to feel sorry for myself that the storm skipped over DC.

    Love the poem! Enjoy your tea!

  3. Electricity's on and cinnamon buns are baking. I love a good storm.

  4. Fickle:It's hard to have snow without cold. I don't miss the cold too much, but oh that snow.

    Reya, It was crazy last year on the east coast. But the winter isn't over yet and you could still get a big one.

    Chrystal, I am soooooo envious! And I bet YOU don't have to make up your snow day on President's Day, like we will.

  5. Hey Chrystal, how about sending some of those rolls up here?! The snow drifts out my garage door were up to my waste and the snow sculptures are gorgeous!Makes me wish I was a photographer! But I've had enough winter for the year, thank you very much. I hope Jimmie the ground hog gets it right this time!!


Talk to me.