Friday, May 25, 2018
One of America's Great Newspapers ~ Toledo, Ohio

Mary Alice Powell

There's pleasure to be found in the snow

Even those of us who detest winter weather and can't get down physically to make an angel in the snow anymore can find some benefits in the season. Granted, you really have to look for them.

As an example, this morning at beautiful Posey Lake, which is frozen solid and covered with snow, the temperature is zero. Good grief, I can't remember it ever being that cold, but then I forget a lot of things, and temperature records is one of them.

The first thing I do at 5:30 every morning is run to the window to see if that beautiful white stuff has floated from heaven to earth while I slept. Rarely have I been disappointed this winter and often get to clean off the car. It's such an invigorating wake-up call to scrape off the ice that the windshield wipers can't budge.

Yes, I have a garage, but Henry is too long for the 1930 building. Besides, there is so much stuff in the garage, it's not easy to get a bicycle in, let alone a car.

Oatmeal tastes better than ever on the mornings when the wind whistles through the wall plugs, and cuddling a cup of steaming hot coffee in your hands warms heart and soul.

I can still hear my mother standing on the side porch back home yelling, "Mary, you didn't eat your oatmeal" as I was dashing down the hill on my way to Adrian High School. Had she known oatmeal reduced cholesterol I may have been locked indoors until it was eaten. But back then we weren't burdened with such information and just ate what was affordable. Milk was the after school snack. Popcorn was the evening treat by the TV. No, that's wrong, we didn't have a TV.

One person's pain can be another one's joy. It's what comes to mind when I look through the icy windowpanes toward the lake, dreading to go out to feed the birds or drag the garbage cans to the road. The frozen lake is obviously one man's joy. I see him darting in and out of a fishing shack that is placed near the shoreline. Digby often barks at him. The old dog understands fishermen in boats but not people dressed like spacemen who walk on the ice on which he is forbidden to tread.

I wonder about ice fishermen. Do they truly enjoy braving the elements in one of those little sheds, sometimes all alone, with only a cold fish to talk to? Do fish caught in cold waters taste better? Then I wonder about the fish too. If they are not near the shore in summer when lines are cast, what's the big attraction in winter?

Winter fashion rules dictate the layered look and the first one should be a thermal or silk shirt made for protection against the cold. So what if winter underwear is not sexy or in the high-fashion colors? It beats shivering. From there we can build the layers with sweater, jacket, coat, and scarf. Don't forget a hat. Most days are bad hair days in winter.

And therein is one more good thing about arctic temperatures. The layers make us look heavier than we are. When the scales spun high at Dr. Good's office last week, I excused it by blaming it on all the clothing.

The remark was ignored, but the understanding physician issued the best prescription I have ever been given: Sunshine, my dear. You are one of those people who needs sunshine, not these dull gray days in Ohio and Michigan.

Thank you, Dr. Good. See you in the spring. I'm off to take care of that sunshine prescription.

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