Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Snow Day

Em’s school was closed today. A fact we learned last night at about 10:15. There was much whooping. There is no actual snow on the ground here, but in some of the higher areas there is lots. Plus in this part of the country, we can’t handle any amount of snow with grace, it’s such a rarity.

I lived in Virginia as a child. I still remember that feeling of lying in bed listening to the radio early in the morning after snow had fallen. “Oh please, oh please, oh please.” Praying to hear the name of my school on the radio.

The happiness of learning that our school was closed is comparable to few other joys. We always said that we would go back to sleep after we heard the good news, but we were too happy.

My brothers and i would bound around in our pajamas until all the chores demanded by my exasperated mother were done, and all the snow clothes could be located.

There were:
Neighbor children to meet up with.
Snow forts to build.
Snowball fights to have.
Snow men and women to be made, and once, a snow horse.
Snow ice cream to be made and eaten
(this was when we didn’t know, or care, how filthy snow really is.)
Sledding to be done.
Tunnels to be engineered, if the snow was deep enough.

We would play outside until we were wet and exhausted. Then all us kids would pile into someone’s house and strip off our wet pants, gloves, hats and jackets. These would go immediately into the dryer while we drank hot chocolate in our long undies. As soon as the clothes were dry, off we’d head back into the snow.

Bliss. We had stolen a day from the usual oppression.

21 comments:

Maggie said...

I remember once when I was young, in your area, it started snowing at night and the snowflakes were lightly bopping here and there under the street lamp. My father, always rather a kid inside, got dressed to go out and urged all of us kids to join him. My mother was too sour for that kind of thing. We all dressed even though it was past our bedtime and we went out and ran around in the street catching snowflakes. Good time, good times.

Sober Briquette said...

What baffles me is how hard it is to make a snow man. As an adult, the tallest one I've managed didn't top 3 feet. Did the magic somehow leave me?

jen said...

ahhhh...i used to love snow days..but the problem was, living in a rural mountain town, we'd only figure it out after the bus didn't show and we'd been freezing for an hour.

Nancy Dancehall said...

Aw what fun! I remember the Blizzard of '76 back in Illinois, when we the snow was so deep we could walk onto the roofs.

It's snowing here as I type. Beautiful.

Thailand Gal said...

It snowed in Los Angeles one time but the date totally escapes me. I do remember seeing it on the national news though. It lasted 45 minutes or so. It was kind of exciting! LOL

Peace,

~Chani

QT said...

I lived in Eastern WA at the base of White Pass and usually once a year we would have a snow day. It went a lot like you described yours, tho we only got to build a snow tunnel once and it really sticks out in my mind.

It was 60 and rainy here in WI today - I think we have switched weather zones! Glad you didn't get caught anywhere - I know a few people who did on their commute home.

meno said...

maggie, i love snowfall by streetlamp. That's so cool of your dad, but my mom's knickers would have been in a knot too.

de, The snow horse we built (mostly my middle brother) was big enough to actually sit on. We put a board across the two pillars for the feet. It is hard! Depending upon the type of snow though. Last time i did it, Em and i built snow mice, as there was hardly any snow.

jen, oh, that's so sad! But still a day recaptured from school.

nancy, snow makes me squeal. It really is beautiful. Walking on the roof? How cool is that?

chani, snow in LA would be an occasion. We get it rarely enough here that it's a treat.

qt, only once a year for a snow day. What a disappointment. So you know some folks from this area? The Mister works close enough to home that he could walk if he had to, and i am retired, so i am home anyway.

Mama P said...

Sounds lovely. We had earthquake days here and there in L.A., but no running toilets wasn't as glamorous as hot cocoa by the fire.

amusing said...

And, by contrast, there is the modern snow day, where the kids find out there's no school (YAY!) and that now they have to tromp through the snow to the train with mommy and go to her work all day (boo..)

Sanjay said...

School being out is always fun. I remember when school used to be out due to the monsoons. It was like being at a water park outside.
Ah fun fun fun!

Josephine said...

I love hearing about your snow days. It was the same for me growinig up in West Virginia, oh how I loved the hot cocoa.

Amazing what a few hundred miles can do. Today in Charleston, it's warm enough for sandals and t shirts.

meno said...

mamap, you know, earthquake days just don't sound like much fun. Have you always lived in LA?

amusing, On school snow days i used to take Em to work with me too. She still preferred it to school, but staying home would have been much preferable.

sanjay, Monsoon days! That's cool. Warm and raining is always fun.

josephine, All in all i prefer the warm, but that won't cause school to close. Think i'll go have some hot cocoa.

Princess in Galoshes said...

Ooooh, I remember sitting in bed, pleading with the radio gods to name my school. Those really were some of the most natural, all-time highs.

AND! We're having one in Colorado, today. Well, I am. It's snowing, and I'm home, and I do believe there's hot cocoa and maybe a snow angel in my near future. :-)

Mother of Invention said...

We get about 4 snow days a year here and the teachers are as bad as the kids as far as clinging to the radio! We call it a making soup and baking day! More recently, they've made us go in even if the kids can't get their by bus. Doesn't make sense for us to risk our lives, but they cancel the buses.

I already have my soup bones from the turkey ready at the first sign of a blizzard! Today is 16 Celsius but by tomorrow it will be -3!

Dick said...

I'm just a little north of you but have about ten inches of the stuff and the radio this morning said we should get another four inches this afternoon before it warms up enough tonight to go to rain. Then it will get real sloppy outside as all that turns to slush.

We have been staying home & kind of enjoying it, an advantage of being retired. But today we have a trip to the grocery store and Starbucks on the agenda. I did get a few photos of the stuff that I'll post soon.

Penny said...

Beautiful Memories! I remember checking the local news, too. If it was lower than -35 with a skin-freeze warning, we got to stay in.. but stay in we did.. When we moved to a warmer climate, where they weren't used to the occassional flurry, snow meant the same things as you've listed so sweetly here. I loved those days! Happy Winter!

meno said...

princess, it was a wonderful moment to finally hear that name. YES! When i lived in Colarado they never once closed school. Although it was a college. Boo hoo. Take a picture of the snow angel for us.

MOI, i can't believe they made you teachers go in. HOW RUDE! Mmmm, maybe i'll make soup for dinner.

dick, Yippee. I'll bet it's pretty. I look forward to seeing your pictures.

penny, i recall those days very fondly. Now it'a all internet and TV and games. Too bad for them.

Autumn said...

I'm in VA. but in the beach area, so we rarely get snow. I do remember though the few times school closed when I was a kid for bad weather.

Mignon said...

Madeleine's preschool is on the same schedule as the public school system, and despite the fact that snow is a pretty ordinary occurrence here, I still get excited to check the radio in the morning. It means I don't have to get her snow gear on, at the very least.

Platypus said...

Great post, Meno! We get snow so rarely here but I used to love the winters when, as a child, we actually got snow at this time of year. Snow days rock!

meno said...

autumn, welcome, The beach in VA has other, fabulous rewards. We used to go there every summer for two weeks. I miss it.

mignon, i feel badly for admitting this, but when Em was younger and i worked, i hated snow days because i felt guilty for not going to work, and bad for taking her with me.

platypus, And there was a second one today! Life is beautiful.