Nature seems to whisper during a snowstorm as a blanketing hush falls over the land, sky and sea. Even the foghorn sounds muffled, appearing to broadcast an octave lower, hesitant perhaps to disturb the mood. Movement is scarce, too, as birds and animals disappear to wait out the storm in nests, burrows or on the lee side of a tree, bush or large rock.
Our intrusions sound all the more distinct, though, in a wintry landscape. Footsteps crunch underfoot, cars sound thick and wet, and the rattle of the snow plow scrapes the air. Squeals of laughter soar through the air, too, especially at the Tashmoo Overlook or third hole at Farm Neck golf course as sledders welcome the first big snowfall of the year.
There is no denying a snowstorm can bring with it hazards — slippery surfaces to walk or drive on, high winds and waves — and caution is always essential. But don’t let the scales tip too far to the negative side. A blanket of white covering roads and woods is an invitation to pause and marvel.
Coming so soon after Christmas and the new year, the storm feels like an extension of the holiday, yet another gift to be unwrapped for the young and young at heart.