You wake up on a winter morning and pull up the shade, and what lay there the evening before is no longer there – the sodden gray yard, the dog droppings, the tire tracks in the frozen mud, the broken lawn chair you forgot to take in last fall. All this has disappeared overnight, and what you look out on is not the snow of Narnia but the snow of home, which is no less shimmering and white as it falls. The earth is covered with it, and it is falling still in silence so deep that you can hear its silence. It is snow to be shoveled, to make driving even worse than usual, snow to be joked about and cursed at, but unless the child in you is entirely dead, it is snow, too, that can make the heart beat faster when it catches you by surprise that way, before your defenses are up. It is snow that can awaken memories of things more wonderful than anything you ever knew or dreamed.
~ Frederick Buechner
The deep freeze is still upon us here on the Eastern Shore. We continue to be under a wind chill advisory because the “feels like” temperature is subzero. Brrrrr! Without the heat pump working, I’m beginning to feel the chill on a deeper level. It’s a reminder to appreciate what I have when I have it. I’ve done a lot of complaining about the heat pump, but haven’t given much thanks for it when it’s working.
The last two days have been bright and sunny and, in spite of the cold, some snow-melt has occurred. There is a steady drip at the front of the house in the morning when the sun is hitting it. The snowdrifts are shrinking although I suppose that could be gravity or weight pulling them down.
At the end of yesterday’s post I mentioned “good decisions” as one of the few of the 10,000 reasons to be happy. Well. Shortly after I wrote that post, M asked, “Want to go out to the Point?” and instead of sticking with the smart choice and responding in the negative, I said, “Sure. Why not?” M had walked out to our road, found it had been plowed, and figured we could always turn around if we ran into a snowdrift that was too high for our car to make it through or over.
The car performed quite well. We took our time, and the snow piled on the road due to drifting wasn’t too bad. We later found out that a good and generous neighbor had been out with his own plow taking care of the road.
One of the wonderful things about being willing to brave whatever the weather throws at you is that Mother Nature will frequently reward you for getting out there. That was the case yesterday at the Point. I went there hoping to capture some ice formations from water and wind. Silly me. I should have remembered that the last time I was out there — which was Wednesday — the surface of the water was already frozen. There was no (liquid) water to be thrown around by the wind and formed into sculptures on the beach and grasses by the cold.
What I did see along the shoreline was beautiful — and I’ll show you some of that in a bit — but it was the dead tree that I named the Eagle Tree that captured my attention when we first arrived and started walking around on the beach.
As usual, I heard them before I saw them. They were perched on the tree, calling out in their unusual way (Cornell’s All About Birds describes the female’s call as “unlike any other calls in nature”).
With this being the Year of the Bird, I had decided to start paying more attention to the birds and this was an auspicious beginning to that endeavor. The Bald Eagles are such beautiful, majestic creatures, and I love listening to them chatter and call.
I haven’t gone outside today. It’s colder than it was yesterday and tonight is supposed to be the coldest of the season so far. I might go out to the Point around sunset, but we’ll see. I can’t seem to shake this chill. I don’t know if I caught a bug along the way when we were traveling or if it’s from the lack of heat during this cold spell. It’s not THAT bad in the house, by the way. We can usually get it up to about 70°F in the living room with the fire roaring. The rest of the house is about 60°F which is a heck of a lot warmer than it is outside. Sleeping has been great. I always sleep well in the cold as long as the bed is warm. We have a water bed and it’s heated. We piled on lots of quilts and it’s one of the best places to be on wintry night. (Leaving it and venturing out into the cold in the morning is a different story.)
Thank you for dropping by today and joining me out at the Point. Stay warm and well. Or cool and well if you’re in the southern hemisphere.
Be good, be kind, be loving. Just Be. 🙂
A few of the 10,000 reasons to be happy: 511) Looking out the window, watching M go by on his cross-country skis. 512) Sunshine streaming through the windows and warming up the house. 513) Watching and listening to the Bald Eagles. 514) Mr. and Mrs. Cardinal visiting the feeders. 515) The flash of red and yellow on the wings of the Red-Winged Blackbirds who have been trying to eat up all the bird food. (The usual thousands of them have been coming around.)