Friday, March 14, 2008


Most of my favorite memories as a child involve snowy days.

For starters, snow means ice and ice means hockey. Playing pick-up games down at the local ice rink (with boards, lights, warming houses and nets furnished by the Parks and Recreation Department) was a childhood staple. I was known as “little Cady” since I had two older brothers whose friends I played with.

And there was sledding. We’d make snow ramps and see who could go down the slope standing up the whole time. We’d play so hard out there that we’d sweat and shiver at the same time, no kidding.

Another memory: grabbing hold of the back bumper of cars with unsuspecting drivers, taking a free ride down the length of our icy street.

Whenever we visited Grandma’s for Christmas, we’d play a game called “Pie”. We’d make snowy tracks that formed a pie shape and then play tag on the outlines. Once, my grandma played with us and we got her laughing so hard she peed her pants.

Sometimes heavy snows would hit while we were at Grandma’s and a handful of us kids would go knocking on neighborhood doors, offering to shovel their walks—for a price. Those days, we’d rake in the dough, only to squander it all on Twinkies, Bubble Yum, licorice, Lick-M-Aid, and orange juice later that evening.

I miss the snow. When I heard New York got pounded recently, it called forth thoughts of joyful, slobbering childhood. Oh, for a snowsuit again.

I grew up without snow. Living on the equator means you don’t get much contact with the stuff. I’ve always been able to enjoy it from afar (ie on top of the beautiful mountains miles and miles away) but rarely had to live with it on a daily basis.

Don’t ask me why I chose to go to college in Minnesota of all places! I guess the Canucky in me won out after all and I endured three years of cold Minnesota winters where the inside of your nose would freeze the minute you went outside.

I do love snow in small doses though. I love it best when it’s quiet and deep and the whole world grinds to a halt. It’s great to go out for a tramp in it, then come home, drink something warm and observe it from the window! I do love to sit and watch it snow, as long as I know I don’t have to go anywhere in it if I don’t want to!

Every once in a while, I get a hankering for a good snow, but that doesn’t happen too often. (And I’m always careful not to tell Mary I’m hoping for it, because if it DID snow, she would be very angry with me!)

I do not like snow down my neck, or up my sleeves, or in my boots or in my face. So basically, I like snow on my own terms! Which makes living in Madrid perfect!


spain dad said...

I miss ice hockey too! I remember one day I played hockey with my friend Chris when the temperature was -60 °F with wind chill. (I'm sure there was snow too that day!)

paulo said...

"i'm dreaming of a white christmas. just like the ones i never knew." that's what my brother & i used to sing, being from the land where a "wintry mix" was cause for delaying or cancelling school.

Mary Clara said...

You did mention snow on the retreat.
And it did snow.
And I was, indeed, angry at you.