Exclaim & Murmur »

Masthead header


I have so many memories of snowy days.

There were the the forts made by hollowing out huge embankments of snow, gifted to the neighborhood kids by plows driving through our cul-de-sac. I can’t quite believe we were allowed to do that, truthfully. When I think about climbing inside a gigantic and unpredictable pile of heavy cold stuff, squeezed in under pounds of snow like little eskimos, I feel a bit claustrophobic. Maybe our parents didn’t know what we were up to?

There was also the time my family moved to Fargo, driving up on our move-in day to a garage door entirely covered by drifted snow. It was in the middle of the worst winter on record; something like 130 inches of snow that fell that year. I wasn’t particularly happy to be there and after seeing first-hand what my future held, muttered, ‘As soon as this snow melts, I am running away.’ Little did my thirteen year old self know, snow doesn’t melt in Fargo until May and by then my threat would be forgotten. Probably frozen out of my brain by the cold.

Yet another time was when we got a huge stretch of snowy weather in Denver. One night, I put on O’s extra pair of snow pants, rolled up the cuffs and out we went. It was late, late, but who cares when you’re with your favorite person? We ran around a nearby park like puppies, rolling around in the snow, laughing maniacally. (The maniacal laughter miiiiight have mostly been me). He let me knock him backwards into the snow just to see if I could do it; it took all of my strength and more than one attempt. It was pretty funny.

This weekend, we got hit by another mega snowstorm. You might have seen it on the news? A little guy called Nemo?

While we were inside watching things get progressively whiter, it kind of just seemed like some snow. We were warm and safe and it was pretty. We were lucky our power didn’t go out.

The real magic came when we left the house and saw the hundreds of people looking around, walking up empty streets with their cameras and sleds and coffee. It gave me a real sense of being part of this community for the first time since moving here- not just the university community. After all, everyone was adding to the same collection of ‘Winter Storm 2013’ memories. When my grandkid interviews me for a history project and asks me if I ever lived through anything big, meteorologically speaking, I’ll remember how the National Guard was patrolling the streets and none of the grocery stores were open and you couldn’t even see the tops of the cars parked in the road on State Street, there was just that much snow. And so will everyone else that was here. They’ll remember those exact same things. I like that.

More like this:

February 12, 2013 - 3:21 am

Haley - Those forts! I’d completely forgotten those forts!

February 12, 2013 - 4:09 am

Emily - Do you remember how we would pour buckets of water on them so they would have a frozen shell? And we made slides and froze (attempted to freeze) them, too?

February 18, 2013 - 3:21 am

Haley - I just brought home a bag full of picture books from the library and one of them is about neighborhood kids making snow forts from the huge piles of snow made by plows. No joke.

February 18, 2013 - 4:06 am

Emily - Love it.