Look forward to first big snow

When we get that first major snowstorm of the year, it causes a lot of problems for many people. Getting to work, getting children off to school, picking up milk from the farm or anything involving outside travel are all more difficult.

Yet there is something about that first heavy snowfall of the season that creates a different world. It may be temporary but it is different for a while.

With that heavy blanket of white, the world around us seems to quiet down. The birds are still in their nests or sheltered areas. Squirrels are not scampering around the yard like they usually are. The deer are still in the woods behind our house and haven’t yet been out in search of food.

Slow traffic on the road makes it seem like the world has become slower. Maybe it has, for the moment at least. School has been closed because of poor road conditions. Children and teachers celebrate a snow day from studies.

If it is a wet heavy snowfall that sticks to everything, the world around us is beautiful. Like a fairyland that we should take time to enjoy because it will change rapidly if it warms up above freezing.

Then what happens? Unless it is bitter cold, the birds and wildlife start to become active. The bird feeder tends to be busy and the squirrels start to scamper around the yard and under the bird feeder in search of food.

Overnight, the deer have been active because we see many deer tracks in the back yard. Or we may see them grazing along the edge of the woods.

Snowplows have been rumbling up and down the road making it safer for traffic. More people have ventured out to get to work or the grocery store.

Children with their sleds are getting out to enjoy the chance to use them. The nearest slope good for sliding down hill tends to get busy with venturesome sled riders.

As the day moves along after a heavy snowfall, the world around us tends to become more alive again. We have adjusted to the inconvenience of the snowfall. So have the birds and wildlife around us. Children have taken advantage of a day off from school and the chance to go sledding.

Unfortunately, heavy snowfalls tend to cause a rash of automobile accidents. Drivers forget to slow down or are not yet aware of hazardous road conditions. They may not have allowed extra time to get to their destinations.

As I have gotten older, I find the best way to enjoy a heavy snowfall is sit in my easy chair and watch it come down. It can be beautiful but many people have to take the extra risks of being out in it when roads are bad. While I was working, I did a lot of travel in weather of all kinds, so I can appreciate what drivers go through.

When the temperature begins to rise, the snow will begin to fall off the trees and roofs. The world turns a bit drab from the beauty of the early snowfall that stuck to everything. It is all part of winter and if we are going to live in this part of the country, we need to enjoy all we can.

If you can, find a way to enjoy the changes around us when a heavy blanket of insulating snow covers the earth. And if you don’t have to get out and be on the roads, just stay in and enjoy your easy chair and appreciate the comfort of your home.

Eventually, winter will pass. It always has.

Parker is an independent writer for the Tribune Chronicle. Contact him at 149woodside@twc.com.