Tuesday, January 19, 2010
After what seemed like an eternity of ice, cold temps and frozen ducks, Mother Nature granted us a reprieve, how ever brief it might be.
It's said about the deep south, "if you don't like the weather, just wait three days". Well, this last round of cold lasted far longer than three days. It only made the warm air, sunny days and relatively mild nights even more welcome.
I realize it's some what of a false sensation, but the sunny afternoon feels much like an early spring. Though the cold temperatures and precipitation are sure to return before the real winter relief, we find the results of the temporary trend of rising temperatures brings more than one type of warmth. Nature is quick to recover from the frigid fest and regale us with a hopeful interlude of blue Skies and signs of hope. The birds seem to be a little more chipper with their movement. Perhaps more playful than scurrying and scrounging for food. The trees aren't drooping with the weight of winter. Their branches seem to be strengthened, reaching more skyward toward a warming sun.
I was on our deck servicing the bird feeders,(we have at least four that feed the feathered friends)when I observed a cocoon twirling in the wind from an overhanging branch. The limbs are stripped of leaves and all signs of green have long since passed, but the cocoon stood out as brightly as the blue sky it was silhouetted against. It was obvious that it had already been vacated but it brought a smile to my lips. Warmth and hope. More than welcome after gray skies and the absence of the sun's comfort. Granted, a cocoon is the symbol of rebirth, the continuing cycle of life. But just the sight of such a symbol was a reminder that the cold and gray won't last forever. That's a good thing to remember.
Warmth and Hope,
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
This is suppose to be the Sunny South. Here lately mother nature has been suffering post Christmas blues, resulting in our being blue. A result of poor circulation from all the cold temperatures. It's been below freezing for several days and down to fifteen degrees at night. I realize that's not cold north of the Mason Dixon line, but here it's equivalent to living inside the appliance we preserve meats and our garden vegetables in. Come to think of it, it resembles a deep freezer. Lots of white rime frost on every surface and every droplet of condensation turned into ice. Every time you open the door, a blast of Arctic like wind hits you in the face. If the wind blows hard enough and hits you in the forehead, you wind up with the same feeling you get in the summer when you eat home made ice cream too fast. A brain freeze! That explains some of the brilliant ideas coming from our nations capital. I'm afraid those brains are permanently frozen.
I've heard people all my life saying they liked winter more than summer. (These people are traitors of the southern life style) They say things like, "I can put on enough clothes to keep warm, but I can never stay cool in the middle of the summer". Well I can't put on enough clothes to keep warm, but I can easily sweat in the summer. I don't have to make an effort to sweat. I have to constantly make an effort to stay warm in the winter. It makes me stay inside. I much prefer the freedom of being outside. I feel like I'm being held hostage in the winter.
The other morning when I was leaving the house while the temperature was sixteen degrees, I noticed some ducks frozen in the pond across the road. After I took a picture, I tried to check and make sure they were really stranded. Sure enough they were wedged in the ice.Their little feet had to be freezing. I made some noise and slid some objects across the ice to get the quackers attention. Finally after lots of flapping, squawking and feathers flying, they pulled free. They waddled around and slipped and slid until they got a clumsy running start and flew away.
When I was very young I had a paper route. Actually several paper routes. When it rained I put on a rain suit and climbed on my bike, as I got older, a motorcycle and later a car. When it got cold, I did the same thing and just got cold. Before I had a drivers license if there was ice and snow, I had a piece of tin from a barn roof that I would tie a rope to and pulled my papers around the route. Even though the Down Hill Racer Sled was built in Mississippi, no one I knew owned a store bought sled. I have been so cold delivering papers, that when I got home and pulled my boots off, the heels of my feet had cracked and bled. Now that's cold! This was an omen of things to come. After that, every job I ever had required that I deal with foul,(fowl), weather. This winter, I can stay inside and keep my feet propped up under a nice warm comforter. I still hate winter. I feel like I'm being held prisoner.
The one thing that makes me smile in the winter is the odor of a fire burning. The kind that I use to appreciate as a child. Red oak, or hickory flaming away in a fire place. You knew when you smelled the smoke you were headed in the direction of comfort. The embers glowed and often were the primary light of the rooms they occupied. If you moved away from their warmth you immediately were reminded of their importance.
Life's memories are like those burning embers of a fire. When you move away from those elements of your life that provide your inner warmth, you are immediately aware of the cold reality of the world. If you move too far you may get stuck in the ice. At least until something or some one comes along and urges you to break free from the ice and fly away to those glowing embers.
Keep your feet,...................... and your hearts warm.