10 January 2011

Snow day

It wasn't the greatest of snow days.  The two snows of 2010 -- Valentine's Day and the day after Christmas, just two weeks ago, were infinitely better.  Although we woke to about four inches with even the concrete sidewalks and driveway completely covered, the actual snowfall didn't last the morning.  It was followed by hours of a dreary freezing mist interspersed with considerably harder sleet and some freezing rain.  It wasn't a snow day that invited play outside. 

On the plus side I prepared a hot breakfast for Tal -- biscuits, grits (made with chicken stock), left over ham on the griddle, scrambled eggs and strawberry preserves.  The dear man was shocked and obviously delighted.  I took his compliment that it was better than Huddle House in the spirit in which he meant it.  But, the Huddle House ... I can walk away from the table with a cheery thank you. Some other lucky person gets to deal with the dishes and the grits pot.

My assessment of the day has not too very much to do with the weather.  I had spent some time over the weekend thinking about the shooting in Tucson on Saturday, realizing that we are teetering not too far from a real free for all.  It didn't help that Tal and I watched "El Dorado" (the 1966 film starring John Wayne and Robert Mitchum among other notables) one cold afternoon recently.  The wild west seems more and more a reality around the globe.  Will some sort of a demilitarized zone for the conduct of respectful public discourse become a necessity?

A thin covering of ice on
the dogwood at the driveway
More personally, as I clicked through Facebook last night I began seeing photos of and messages about a  friend from the Kanuga Photography Retreat I've attended several times in the past few years.  Elizabeth, only 36 years old, had been in a battle -- a winning battle we all thought -- with cancer.  She died last Thursday, on the feast of the Epiphany.  In one of her last postings on Facebook she'd been arranging for rides since her treatments were taking a lot out of her.  Her brother, letting her Facebook friends know she'd died, announced that she'd no longer need rides, she'd caught the Glory Train.  I lost completely any sense of time, sitting stock still in Tal's big  blue chair, surprised, stunned and sorrowful. 

So, in a whole variety of ways, today was grey.  Neither of the events on my mind were the least bit necessary; neither of them is explicable.  And, no one can change what happened in either case.  I hate to say it, now that I've given this snow day an unfavorable rating, but I'm kind of glad for today's lack of pizazz.  Sometimes I need to dwell with and in confusion, sadness, misery before I can know what to do next.

Do I know?  The what next? 

I can mind my mouth and my attitude, taking more care that I contribute to the hopeful, that in everything I say -- and do -- I build up rather than tear down.  There's discord enough without my adding to the broadcast of sarcasm and suspicion. 

And, I can treasure the relationships I have, knowing they are, all of them, unique and temporary.

For now, that's enough.

No comments: