Monday, February 27, 2012

Life Below Zero: A Glimpse at a Cold Day

I stepped outside this morning, and the snow squeaked beneath my feet. Not a crunch, a squeak. Squeaky snow means one thing: It's cold.

Two degrees below zero, to be exact. Though I don't know that until I reach my car and look at the outside thermostat reading. And by the time I reach the car, my eyelashes and the inside of my nose are frozen, and the cold has seeped through my dress boots and driving gloves.

Maybe one day someone will invent a car seat that you can actually buckle while wearing gloves. But until then, the gloves come off whenever I secure my two-year-old into place. So with my fingers nearly frostbitten, I slide into my own seat, and the floor beside the gas and brake pedals is solid with ice. This happens over a series of days and weeks during the winter months, when you get into the car with snow on your boots. The snow melts into a puddle beneath your feet as the car warms and you drive to your destination, then the moisture refreezes once the car's off.

Sometimes I wonder if the cold is worth it, if I really should be living in a place where twenty degrees is considered warm weather during the months of January and February and having below zero temperatures isn't uncommon. Sometimes I wish for snow my kids can play in--as opposed to snow that's so deep my kids would get lost in it if they played anywhere that hadn't been plowed a hundred times throughout the course of the winter.

But as I pull out of the driveway, I look around. The snow is bright and white against the silent woods, and the world is still, in a lovely frozen sort of way. Then I get to the end of my road and I see it: Lake Superior. The big terrible body of water that creates its own weather, causing most of the snow and wind and frigid temperatures me and my family endure during the winter months. On a cold morning such as this, the ice has blown into shore, and steam is rising from the lake into the sky.

Have you ever seen steam rise from an icy lake? It's beautiful. It's majestic. It's indescribable. And it only happens when it's very cold.

Sometimes in life, you have to endure the cold, freezing times before you can find the beauty. Have you endured any cold times recently? What beauty have you found hidden inside them? Or maybe you have a fond winter memory. I'd love for you to share your stories in a comment below.

1 comment:

  1. That certainly looks cold but beautiful! The best "cold" memory would be Dec 2010-a new grandson on Dec 23rd and a blizzard on Christmas Day :) Can't get any better than that!