January 02, 2010

New year, new snow

If I were in the country tonight, I’d walk in the woods. Snow has just stopped falling and, because there is a full moon behind the clouds, it’s more like late dusk than night.

But I’m not in the country tonight. I’m in the city and have just come in from shoveling. With my neighbours long gone to bed – my partner, too – I was alone. Nice, being out in a fresh snow with no other people around. My shovel scraping the sidewalk was all I heard. That, and that which I never listen to – my breathing. Oh, and in remembering what my mother used to say, “I can’t hear myself think”,  I heard my thoughts.

I thought of Christmas and the easy, comforting welcome of my sister and her husband. The beautiful Christmas table, the five place settings, the abundant cheer and warmth, the choice to be with each other. The absence of others was marked and acknowledged as perhaps unavoidable, but those who were present embraced each others company with the tacit agreement that no trouble would come into the house. And if it did, it would be ignored.

We talked the night away, had liqueur in our coffees Christmas morning, thought we’d collapse of exhaustion in the afternoon. The food was better than should be allowed, and wine stained the tablecloth without the fussing attached to these glass-happy accidents. It was good, and then some.

I value those few days and I’m glad I’ll have their memory. We’ll have other Christmases, I know, but that one is gone and won’t be back.  I’ll miss it.  But then again, I’m grateful I didn’t miss it.


One Response to “New year, new snow”
  1. Jane Greening

    Lovely. A true ‘Christmas’.