I went for a short walk to the shop earlier, which meant navigating the frozen wasteland that is parts of my town centre at the moment. Snow is pretty to look at, but I’ve not really appreciated it for years.
Still, one of the other residents on my floor loves the snow. He’s built a snowman, throws snowballs at signs, jumps into trees to make hazy falls of powder from the branches, and even made a snow angel that can be seen in front of the building. He loves the snow in a way I didn’t even see it as a child, and it’s refreshing to be around him.
I was also thinking, on my way back, how a friend of mine from Brazil saw one of the photos I took from my bedroom window before Christmas. There wasn’t so much snow then, but there was enough to glaze the rooftops, and she was really excited because in real life she’s never seen snow.
Knowing all this makes me wish sometimes I could see snow the way they do. But what stops me? Being an adult and a fear of being pelted in the face with snowballs, especially after I was hit with one that contained a rock in school.
I haven’t played in the snow for so long I don’t remember a time when I did, but I do love the way it feels as it crunches under your shoes. I love kicking leaves in autumn, and though I never jump in puddles I like the waves my boyfriend makes with his car when he drives through them sometimes. I do like the way rain feels on my skin, and the sound it makes against the windows and roof. And, despite myself, the smile on my face that first morning I saw the delicate flakes flowing down to the ground outside was so powerful I felt like a child again, just for a moment.
We may hate the weather at times, and commenting on the weather is the most stereotypically mundane conversation you can make. But there was a time when you saw snow and were mesmerised. Some grown people still would be, either through youthful high spirits or a lack of experience in their home countries. I hope I still have that same smile on my face the very last time I see a snowfall, no matter how old I am.
Even if you don’t go storming through rainfall or crashing through a pile of leaves, take a moment to look outside your window no matter what the weather’s like. If it’s sunny, enjoy the warmth on your skin. If it’s raining, watch the droplets trickle down the window. If it’s overcast, see how many shades you can find in the clouds, and enjoy the patterns they made as they flow by. And if, like me, there are gentle snowflakes drifting past you, try to remember why that excited you as a child – but from the warmth and comfort from your home. After all, snow is fun and pretty, but it’s also bloody cold!