March 5, 2015

BW photograph of pine trees in a heavy snow storm.

Copyright 2015 Kevin P. Mick Photography. All rights reserved.

Yesterday’s forecast was for rain, then sleet, then snow overnight and throughout today with a total accumulation of 6-10″.  This morning presented a very fine and inexorably steady snow that was quite beautiful to see.  However, it also brought the thought “when did snow stop being fun?”

After all, 25 years ago these were the exact conditions one could only hope for as I did the majority of my backpacking in winter.  I have written about this in previous posts and so will not belabour that point.  However, I distinctly remembered a winter trip into White Oak Canyon down in the Shenandoah mountains of Virginia.  This was before photography became such an important part of my life, so the only images I have of the trip are in my long-term memory.  Nonetheless, it was an incredibly existential trip and very fondly perceived and remembered as “that was fun.”

With that in mind, I walked about two miles for a cup of coffee this morning as the snow came down.  There was very little traffic, so it was quite quiet and still.  It was easy to hear the crunch and squeak of the snow underfoot.  The cold and wet created a stinging sensation on the face that was actually quite exhilarating.  Once again the thought came to mind “that was fun”.

BW photograph of snow piled outside of a window.

Copyright 2015 Kevin P. Mick Photography. All rights reserved.

And then I began to shovel the driveway.  I have a very long driveway and operate on the theory that it is better to move 5″ twice than to move 10″ once.  Given the amount of moisture in this weather system and the rain that fell yesterday, there was a thin coat of icy slush under the heavy snow.   The thought that kept circulating through my mind was “this is not fun.”  That perception was magnified by the new inch or so of snow that fell while I was shoveling.  As I am writing, the snow is continuing to fall and there is no doubt that the predicted total of 10″ or so will be on the ground before the storm is finished.  I will be out there again tomorrow.

While doing that first go ’round with the snow, I again returned to that 25-years-ago mindset and remembered how on days like this there would be older children and young adults coming to the door with tools in hand offering to do the shoveling for a fee.  Of course, my pride and lower back were much stronger then and it was difficult to allow someone else to do what was perceived to be my job.  It has been years since anyone has come by with that offer.  Perhaps the younger ones grew up and moved to Arizona.  What has not changed over time is the perception that moving the snow is my job.

If someone did make that offer now, what would I do?

Take care.



One Response to “Perceptions”

  1. If you ever need any help with the snow just let me know will be glad to help you shovel the drive way, for free!
    Thanks for the nice post as usual.

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