Cynthia L. Eppley 12/21/2020
Winters in Eastern PA are always hit or miss. And snow is a love/hate relationship. It is beautiful when it arrives. But the slushy, icy aftermath is not pleasant.
We haven’t had a major snow fall in about 1,000 days.
When this storm was first predicted, about 5 days out, we all held our breath. Would this be a big one?
And let the reader understand: this announcement of “snow” begins the wild dash to the store:
“Buy bread! Buy milk! Buy eggs!”
You might think the stores would never open again.
And what are we to do with those items? Evidently, make French Toast.
The Storm Arrives
So when the storm hit, Dec 16-Dec 17, we were ready.
Weather forecasting is a science now, and so we watch the weather maps with great excitement.
This one was to hit Wednesday afternoon and last through Thursday morning.
Location, location, location
Just like in Real Estate, it all depends where you live.
Thus, the “I-95” Corridor is key. If you live to the South of I-95, chances are you’ll get rain or minimal snow. If you live to the North, snow will come your way.
In large amounts.
So we watch the varying news reports, viewing the colored bands with great anticipation. And it did not disappoint. Expected totals from 2-3” to up to 3 ft.
The swath of the storm extended over several states and was officially a “Nor’Easter.”
Back in the day, we would listen to the radio to hear if school would be closed due to snow. The school had a number, and as the announcer scrolled through the list, we anxiously awaited to hear our number called. Cheers erupted. There would be a mad dash to grab snow boots mittens and snow pants.
But this is Winter 2020.
And school is mostly virtual.
So what to do?
Certainly the kids can still “attend school” even with snow. Right? And thus began an outcry:
“It’s the first snow of the season! Cancel school! Let the kids have a snow day!”
Some elected to “skip” school altogether. But then this announcement came:
“Your work is to watch two movies with your family, lots of snow ball fights and playing in the snow.”
Finally something normal for our kids in this difficult year. Snow days are priceless and generate memories that last a lifetime.
A chance to make snowmen and snow angels just might be the happiest times many have had this year since March.
Let the Wild Rumpus Begin!
There was joy in the land.
Thursday began bright and clear.
Kids were out in full force, in full snow gear.
Piping voices and laughter could be heard.
I watched our 2 neighbor boys “ambush” their father with a flurry of snowballs.
“Do you want to build a snowman?”
I walked over to Ambler Bro Park, to the old sledding spot.
Screams of excitement filled the air. A crowd of kids and parents huddled at
the top of the hill. With a mighty push, the next sled whooshed down the hill and across the field, toward the creek.
I reminisced with them about our 3 children, 30 years ago, using that very same hill.
And the reaction?
“Im already hurting…..but sledding was SOOOO worth it!”
“Was the best day of school ever!”
(Some) Dogs love Snow
Even our Ella had her first snow day! She loved it. “Snow flakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes.”
Snow Day 2020
The old sled we once used is now a decoration in front of our home, with ice skates. It will warm up in the next few days. The snow will melt.
Parents and kids mingled together making snowmen, snow angels, and having snowball fights. Concerns about school were left behind.
Kids got to be kids for a magical moment.
In C.S.Lewis’ book, “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe,” Narnia is a magical place where there is always snow. Always winter, but never Christmas.
On Dec 17, 2020, time stood still for a moment. And just like the miraculous, magical snowflake? It was magical. And a bit like Christmas.