Thursday, February 24, 2011

A snowy farewell

We awoke yesterday morning to find the island bathed in snow.  By the time we'd gotten the house cleaned up and everything packed into the car, the snow was several inches deep, and when we arrived at the ferry dock it was to watch cars struggling to climb the hill up from the store and failing.

There was no sign of a plow (they have to come from off the island, and were obviously busy elsewhere) and even after we reached Anacortes things were still a mess.  The roads were terrible, and cars and trucks were pulled off to the side, either waiting for plows or trying to put on chains to help them navigate the snow.

We were grateful for our all-wheel-drive, and stayed in that mode until we reached the highway, which had actually been plowed, and I kept my camera on for quite a while, capturing quiet scenes of the Skagit Valley in snow as we struggled home.  Snow is a rare occurrence here, and though it strips our rural landscape of its color, it's hard not to sigh at the enhanced beauty of the snowy scenes -- which is what my daughter did as she paged through the images on my camera when we finally arrived back on Bainbridge.

"Oh, mom, I wish I could have been there with you.  It's so beautiful..." (there was no snow here, and still isn't, though several community meetings were canceled last night due to snow predictions).  What is it that we love so much about those snowy images? Do we look at all those white bits fluttering down and think of snow globes? Is it just that the snow reduces everything to its bare black and white bones, and to silence?  Or because it softens all those edges?  Or is it just that it awakens childhood memories of sledding and snow angels, the thrill of being released from school; the taste of hot chocolate when we finally come in from the cold?

But of course, this snow is now just another memory, another moment in time, another image we carry...

1 comment:

Maureen said...

Such a charming scene! Glad you made it home safely.