The Mountain of Snow
By: Gina Kay Singerhouse
In a small mid-western town in a small mid-western state there is an event that takes place at this time each year. It’s an event that does not have an official name, but many of us take part in this annual event. I guess perhaps this is the year that we give it a name. How about the Mountain of Snow?
In this small mid-western town in this small mid-western state there is a church parking lot. The denomination of this church is irrelevant, for we all have our own God. The parking lot of this church contains many parking spots, however, come winter the lot diminishes in size. Why, you ask? One word, simply stated, snow.
You see, in this small mid-western town in this small mid-western state, when it snows it stays. This past winter many of us have endured snow and cold. But not like this small mid-western town in this small mid-western state. Most states see snow for a few days then it melts. But in the upper mid-west, when it snows it stays and stays and stays.
The event I speak about is the melting of the “Mountain of Snow.” Today is Tuesday, February 18, 2014. Each week I will post a picture of the “Mountain of Snow.” Each week I will tell you more about the mountain and this event that we have just named. So my friends tune in as we share in the melting of the “Mountain of Snow.”
Today is February 25, 2014 and as you can see the mountain did not melt much. In fact it got bigger! Last Thursday and Friday we received an additional 9 inches of snow. I think I need a wide angle lens if we receive any more snow. I paced out the base of the mountain and figured it must measure close to 70 feet in length, 50 feet in width and Lord knows – way too high!
The event that secretly takes place in this small mid-western town in this small mid-western state is of course how long it will take this mountain to melt. Some say May, but then again last May 5th we received 14 inches of snow! Some say June, but I believe July. Why, you ask? Well by Friday of this week we will have reached our 50th morning of below zero temperature! Not in a row, but in the course of the season beginning in November. Our average temperature at this time of the year is well in to the 30’s. But here we sit, in the single digits.
Last Thursday began in the 30’s with rain, but soon turned to sleet then on to snow. Many of the roads around here are caked with ice and snow. Yes, we do have plows and they are out in full force. My hat goes out to them for their effort to keep the roads clear and safe. I think it takes a special person to plow. But then again, there are some who take pleasure in filling up our driveways with what I call road snot. There is nothing like shoveling road snot. Road snot is all of the snow, ice, sleet, salt and any other debris that is plowed from the road and ends up at the end of one’s driveway. Road snot. But not all plow personnel take gratitude in placing road snot at the end of our driveways. In fact, most would rather not place the road snot there. But, what is a person to do when you have four feet of snow piled along the side of the roads.
Last week’s snow made for a Currier and Ives picturesque scene. I spent Saturday with my husband driving around taking some beautiful winter scene pictures that are sure to make it into Strictly Country’s magazine.
But what is pretty is quite sickening for many of us. We all welcome spring but dread it as well. With this much snow, there is sure to be massive flooding. I for one have what I call “Lake George” out my backyard each spring. I think maybe this spring I’ll add a dock, some fish and a boat. What do you think?
Today is March 4, 2014 and as you can see the mountain did not melt much. In fact it got bigger! I guess I sound like a broken record, but last Saturday we received another two to three inches and last night we receive another half of an inch of snow. Just yesterday we hit our 50th morning of below zero weather. Oddly enough that only gets us at the number 9 spot of coldest winters in recorded history.
Each time I look over at the mountain I can not help but think about the Alabama’s song “Mountain Music.” In the beginning of the song, Randy Owen says “See that mountain over there…someday I’m gonna climb that mountain…” It doesn’t matter what time I look over at this mountain, I rarely see children ‘climbing that mountain.’
It truly makes me wonder – when I was a kid, mountains and piles of snow were a luxury toy begging to be played with. So why are there no children climbing, playing and laughing on this mountain? Have we become a society so far gone that a child can not enjoy the simple things in life as snow?
Although I’m in my forties, I was raised the old fashioned way. My parents were in their 40’s when I was adopted. I often kid to my family, friends and colleagues that all I had to play with was a stick, a rock and a piece of string. I did have toys, but very limited toys. In fact, most of my toys were passed down from my older brother and sister or they were toys left behind from foster children that my parents took in. My fondest memories were with toys that didn’t cost anything to my parents. I remember when I was around six or seven, my parents were building a new house and one of the appliances came in a huge box. I played in that box for days. As children we were encouraged to play in the snow, ice skate outside and go sledding. Granted we had the best sledding hill and my parents turned the vegetable garden into an outdoor ice rink.
Now my husband on the other hand, well he was not encouraged to go outside, but he did. He still played lots of video games as well as listened to a lot of music. He too looks over at the mountain questioning why children are not enjoying its limited time.
Today’s children are they not encouraged to play in the snow? Have we become a society that places like this church ban children from playing on mountains of snow because of fear of lawsuits? What happened to just old fashioned fun? Perhaps we as adults should show them just how to have fun with the simplest things in life, like this mountain of snow… anyone care to help?