A Favorite Mount Vernon Day

Last night, the storm clouds set with the sun. Before I went to bed I could see Orion’s belt. I had a day packed with plans: hit the co-op, make this soup, run this trial and ride this handsome horse.

Echo, the mighty steed

I woke with sleepy eyes and rubbed them once, twice, again as I looked out the window. Soft heaps of white snow capped every surface. I’m not just talking about a dusting of snow; I’m talking about quarter-sized flakes falling from the sky so quickly I could not believe my eyes. My neighbor’s roof had almost a half-foot accumulation. Out my front door the world glistened white.

I knew my CA plates and driving skills would not suffice in this weather. Besides, I wanted to be out IN it. I pulled on my beanie and snow boots, grabbed my canvas bags and headed out. Snow gathered like cotton on bare trees.

A Mount Vernon Cotton Tree!

I watched as cars skidded and slid down our huge hill. I watched snow plows push, busses chain up and people step outside in wonderment. Funny how crisp white looks when you’re used to gray. Cashiers at the co-op said they’d never seen this much snow in the lowlands.

I figured out, first-hand, the cliche: Up hill, in the snow. Make that, up hill, in the snow, with groceries.

The snow was soft and light, and I couldn’t resist the temptation to make snowballs and toss them at passing cars. (Don’t worry, I didn’t heave them at little old ladies in Buicks.) It packed so perfectly I had to make a snowman. I raced inside, hardly putting away my groceries. Snagged a soggy carrot leftover from last night’s broth-making. In earnest, I scooped the snow from behind my car. Two birds, one stone, right? Clear the driveway and have some fun? My snowman woman took shape.

She was a bit petite for my liking. I found an old plastic tub and scoured snow from the entire alley. I darted here and there, packing the fresh power into nooks and crannies, giggling like a kid. In fact, I hadn’t noticed anyone else making a snowman or playing in the snow. I was the only one–the only loony, solo, 31 year-old out in the snow making a friend. And I was having a delightful time.

I squished in my snow woman’s nose and ran back inside to source eyes: who needs coal with you can have shallots? A hat, my newly knitted scarf…voila!

My pants were soaked and my fingers mostly frozen, but I didn’t care. I haven’t made a snow person in, oh, I don’t know, twenty-five years? And somehow, between walking to the store and collecting snow to construct my new neighbor, I had the best few hours I’ve spent in Mount Vernon.

Snow Women of Mount Vernon

Something tells me it’s gonna be a pretty good year.

6 thoughts on “A Favorite Mount Vernon Day

  1. Hollis said you’re snow woman looks awesome! He thought the hat looked like hair and we liked the onions for eyes–though onions make you cry.

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