January 10, 2009

Stop and See the Snowflakes

Lucy of the Peanuts wouldn't eat snowflakes until January. They weren't ripe yet.

Today I had to work OT, and there were just a few tiny flakes falling down, not enough to wet the ground or be even barely visible. This lasted a few hours. Twice I went outside and twice I watched the snowflakes land in the dark faux fur on my coat and each one was an individual, each one was perfectly shaped, though they were all different. They looked much like the ones above - they all had six sides, but some were intricate and some were flatter and more platelike. They were all amazingly beautiful.

The first time, I went back in and tried to call my family to tell them to go outside. No answer. The second time, I got no answer again so I told my co-worker to take a quick walk out the door and see what I had seen. Before I could finish my sentence, she cut me off yelling "OMG SNOW! I have to drive home in this, oh SHIT." I had already explained that there was nothing happening - that kind of snow melts a moment after it lands, and it is all separate, tiny, floating things. Not the driving crystals associated with slippery roads or, if you're like me, snowmobiling. So I called my boss on the other side. I told her the same thing, and she laughed in my ear. At me. She had no intention of going out.

I told five people in all, one of whom was outside WITH me and had one on his arm that we both looked at, and not a single one was interested. Snow like that doesn't happen every day. In fact, here, we don't get it but once every several years, if that.

What the hell happens to people? I know it's not "growing up" because I'm grown up. I know it's not just working because my husband would have been interested, and he has worked his whole adult life.

Do they all just lose their sense of wonder? Do they ever, like me, just go out in the rain and take their shoes off and splash in the puddles?

More importantly, if I had said this to YOU and you were with me, would you have looked and marveled at the snowflakes? Would you have wondered at their beauty? Would you have laughed at me? Would you have panicked? Do you still have your sense of wonder and beauty in the little things that happen around you when you're lucky? Please, tell me these answers. I am not being flowery or rhetorical. What would you do, and what do you do? With things like this?


Ripley said...

It seems that most of the snow I've seen for years has been of the all clumped up sort.

Those solitary perfect snow crystals seem to come few and far between.

They are as wonderful as double rainbows.

I see people admiring those.... but most people just trudge along, with their heads down.

Miracles abound, but most people are oblivious.

AnnieMcPhee said...

Thanks, Ripley, for understanding. I run outside during every snow shower looking for rainbows lol. Get lucky once in a while. Once a double rainbow and my friend actually applauded, he was so happy. I'm glad you would have looked.

Eema-le said...

I love that sort of snow. It so cool to see the actual structure of the snowflakes. We had a really pretty snowfall here today. There were a ton of birds at the feeder; juncos, doves, finches, chickadees, a pair of cardinals. The snow was coming down like powdered sugar. It was gorgeous.

AnnieMcPhee said...

There's something pretty - birds. I have a friend, she's in her 70s and she will take off on a drive to a state park and just birdwatch and take pretty pictures. I should have thought of her when I got discouraged; she's never short of wonder and she's almost 80 and worked all her life (until retirement - she never married or dated), and she's the most responsible, staid kind of person I know. You'd think she was cold but she's totally not at all, and if she sees a hawk soar or a chickadee chickadeeing, she's very much into it. She'd have looked at the snow too.

AnnieMcPhee said...

Next time I'll call her.

delftsman3 said...

At one time, I would have been one of the people you describe; just ducking my head and bemoaning the cold....These last three years dealing with health problems have taught me that every moment is precious and to be savored to the fullest extent possible.

And I found that you really CAN see the whole world in a single snowflake.

What a wonderful gift you have, to see the special in the mundane, I hope you never lose it.

AnnieMcPhee said...

What a nice thing to say, delft. Like you I have had severe health problems and even been to the brink of death; I appreciate every moment. But damn, snowflakes? I never would have missed THAT! Or rainbows or birds or lots of things.

I'm glad you won't either. And wish you the best of health.

AnnieMcPhee said...

Actually, I think I was unfair a bit earlier. The guy who was out WITH me in the snow, on whose shirt I pointed out a single, beautiful, flake (and it was seriously amazing - we both saw the same one) was of foreign descent (Spanish) and when I pointed to it, and INSISTED he look at it, he did. He just didn't seem terribly impressed. But what he did say, in his native accent, was "No twew aylike, uh?" No two alike. I nodded vociferously, and said, "That's right, no two alike!" It was on his blue sweatshirt (which was totally unequal to the temperature, and I don't know who he is in the company) but he then walked back into the building seemingly unimpressed. To be honest, I don't KNOW what effect the encounter had on him. I doubt anyone else had stopped to show him snowflakes before. Like I say, it doesn't happen often.

vesta44 said...

The wonder of snowflakes, or seeing a flock of turkeys in a field as you drive by or seeing a soaring hawk or eagle are still things that awe me. And I love the light show of lightning during a thunderstorm, or the rare meteor showers that light up the night sky with sheets of light. I feel sorry for those who have lost their sense of awe and wonder for the simple things. Those are the things that can keep us going in the worst of times, just remembering that you've seen them.

AnnieMcPhee said...

I should have known you would be in on that. I have never seen wild turkeys, but that sounds righteous!

Leeann H said...

The pictures are amazing; thanks for sharing, as I stopped to look at them too! :) Everyone should be grateful for (perhaps) one-time glimpses of nature, no matter how busy they are.