I missed the best of last week’s snow. Snow bunny that I am — though not the hopping or the skiing kind — that is unusual for me. But it was not until late in the day when the electricity went off and the furnace stopped, that I went out in search of fireplace wood. Then I crunched happily through the snow in my backyard, looking for logs that had been covered with a tarp behind my shed. There weren’t many dry logs though, so I continued through more snow down to my neighbor Ann Burt’s. I could see smoke rising from her chimney and smell that cozy, seductive smell of a wood fire. I hoped she would have a log or two for my fireplace to keep me warm until the electricity returned. Happily, she did, and happily, it wasn’t long either before the electricity was back on, and the furnace roaring. It was still snowing lightly, and I was tempted to take a walk — at least as far as Alley’s General Store — to see the snow before the plows disturbed it, but by then it was almost dark.
Later that night, my great nephew, Colin Hurd, who has been staying with me, walked through the woods to the waterfall at Glimmerglass Pond. The moon was out by then, he said, and sparkling magically on the snow.
So the next day, while there were still snow blossoms on the dogwood outside my kitchen window, and the tree limbs on Music street were still limned all in white, I set off toward Glimmerglass. It was daytime. I knew I would be missing the magic of the moon. But there were other sights beside the pond to be seen after the storm.
Illumined as it was by the snow, the swamp maple that fell some months ago across the Tiasquam had made a bridge crossing the river. And on the opposite side of the manmade bridge on Tiasquam Road, the snow seemed to have made a canyon where before there had been swamp. It wasn’t the Grand Canyon — even in miniature, of course — but there was the magic that canyons have about it, all the same. Then once I was in the woods, I noticed the soothing, muted colors on the ground and trees after a snowfall.
The boulder just before the waterfall was starkly gray against the snow. The tan beech leaves that cling to their branches in winter were showing off subtly too.
I made my way through the woods and across the swamp where skunk cabbages will be erupting when spring comes, and through the field where miniature hollies grown. After I reached the Duys property and then Music street, there was a moment of sorrow for I found that the grand old apple tree at Dianne Powers’s had been a victim of the storm. Gathering its wormy apples for applesauce has always been a favorite autumn pastime of mine.
When I got home, I felt a trifle sorry too for the snowdrops that had just begun to bloom in my garden before the snow fell, but I feel sure that more will come with the warmer days. Meanwhile, I have had at least one winter snowstorm to satisfy snow bunny yearnings.