Growing up in Texas, snow days were rare. School let out early if there was even a chance of flurries, but that didnít happen very often. My mom loves snow and would predict such precipitation when temperatures dipped below 30 degrees. At some point, I began to understand it was wishful thinking.
I can remember only one big snow from my childhood, the infamous ice storm of 2001. That was when all us Texans saw the ugly side of winter weather. We didnít have electricity for weeks. Mom and I stayed with her parents, where we all shared the same toilet and relied on each otherís body heat to stay warm. That would have been fine, except the toilet was a bucket and there is such a thing as being too close to your family.
Once the ice storm ended, Mom said she could go without snow for a little while. Thatís the first and only time Iíve ever heard her say that. I couldnít have agreed more. For a while, the thought of a snow day brought back memories of our communal waste bucket. I enjoyed a day off as much as the next person, but I liked indoor plumbing a whole lot more.
That didnít turn me off winter weather completely. When I graduated from college, I decided to move to Fayetteville to live with Gideon. Most people thought I made the move to be with him. I didnít tell them it was so I could maybe experience some mild winter weather. A little snow would be nice. Sure, Iíd take some icicles here or there. So long as it would be gone in a few days, I embraced snow and all its friends.
Luckily, we received a snow exactly like that this weekend. Gideon and I had planned to visit family, but we woke up to a parking lot coated in snow. We chose to stay in town and somehow made it to the grocery store before the roads became too icy to traverse. I donít know about you guys, but my idea of a great day involves doing absolutely nothing. Thatís really what a snow day is ĖĖ doing nothing, but with snow!
As I warmed up on the couch with our kitties, Gideon ventured downstairs to harvest snow for snow ice cream. He later told me he slid all the way down the parking lot and spent nearly 30 minutes getting back to our staircase. I really didnít notice, because I was covered in an electric blanket and cozy cats. Thatís my ideal existence ĖĖ feeling cozy and warm, knowing thereís no place to go and nothing to do.
Of course, the best part of the day was when the cats checked out the white stuff on our balcony. We have had our kitten Ghoulie for about six months, so it was his first snow ever. We were surprised at how brave he was. He clearly didnít enjoy getting frostbite on his paws but kept going back outside for some reason. Iím starting to understand why they say curiosity killed the cat.
As the day wrapped up, Gideon and I celebrated with a steak dinner. He got the sirloin on sale at Harts for $3 but you couldnít tell. It was so tender and juicy. We donít have steak very often, but we donít have a snow day very often either. Most of our plans happened by coincidence on Saturday, and I think I prefer it that way.
After all, you canít plan a perfect day. You never know whatís going to happen to change something. I keep telling my anxious brain I canít be prepared for everything, and our snow day was a great example of that. We werenít prepared but we made it work. We spent the day together, blissfully warm and comfortable.
Iím grateful for such a perfect day. It reminds me of how beautiful life can be, usually when you least expect it.
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Samantha Jones is associate editor for Carroll County Newspapers. Her email address is Citizen.Editor.Eureka@gmail.com