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Posts Tagged ‘weather’

I wish you could see it. I’m passing by the lake and it’s the most amazing sight.

It’s so cold out that the top of the water is still. Not solid, just so still that you have to look very closely to see if it’s moving.

On a regular day the water goes on as far as I can see but today there is a wall. A wall of clouds just at the horizon, so low they seem to be sitting on the water.

I’m sure there’s a perfectly reasonable meteorological explanation for this. It probably has a big name and I’m sure I could Google it, but I’m not going to.

Instead I choose to believe that the clouds came down low in the sky for a look at the water and got too close. Now they’re frozen there, like a tongue to a metal pole.

It’s really that cold out.

I don’t know why the idea of the frozen clouds makes me smile. I should probably feel bad for them being stuck there, but I don’t.

Instead I’m thankful for their beauty, for igniting this story in my head. It seems like a long time since I’ve felt ignited by anything and it feels good.

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It’s January 13th and it’s approximately 14 degrees outside.  I live in Canada so that’s 14 degrees Celsius which, any way you count it, is warm for January.  It’s warm for about six months of the year where I live and it’s definitely warm for January.  The snow has all melted and there are kids outside riding their bikes up and down the street.  I’m sure they have no idea what’s going on either, only they spend less time contemplating and more time enjoying.

We were outside for a bit this morning, long enough to realize that it’s warm for January.  Back home to do all of the chores that only seem to get done on Sundays and to prepare for the coming week.  Each time I walk up and down the stairs to get something or put something away, I look out the window and am surprised by the sight of green grass where only days ago there was snow.  If I didn’t know better, I would think it was March.

A little while ago I took a break from the chores and sat down on the couch with my book and a cup of tea.  The book is the newest John Grisham, comforting in a predictable way.  Sometimes it’s nice to read a story that is, in fact, a story.  It moves quickly, there are a lot of people to keep track of, I feel like I’m learning something.  So often the books I choose (or the ones that choose me) end up being a lot of “inside ones head.”  I spend enough time in my own head, let alone tagging along for the ride in someone else’s, so the break is nice.

Suddenly I look up from the page.  I feel stifled, hot, closed in.  More than anything else I decide what I need to do right in that moment is open all of the windows.

It’s a good thing it’s warm for January.

I start upstairs first, throwing open the heavy curtains and cranking open the windows to feel the warm breeze coming in.  It brushes past my cheeks, stirs my hair on its journey through the rest of the house.  I feel lighter than I have in days. I imagine that breeze reaching the furthest corners of the house, pushing out all of the old, the stale, the stagnant, breathing new life.

Not my curtains…but you get the idea.
(Image: http://sweetwhisperdreams.blogspot.ca)

It’s been one of those weeks where, to the naked eye, nothing has changed but on the inside, deep inside, actually everything has changed. There have been hours spent under blankets, with comforters tucked up under chins, warding off chills. There has been too much thinking. Where one short week ago I thought I had all the answers, now, one short week later I realize I wasn’t even asking the right questions.

And after days of all that I’m so ready to take deep breaths, exhale out all of the old and replace it with some of that beautiful fresh air that is now pouring in my windows.

I know that soon the house will be cold.  The kids will come up from the basement looking for a snack and will question why all the windows are open.  Don’t I know it’s January and you’re not supposed to have the windows open in January?  If I’m still feeling energetic I may suggest we go for a walk. Or I may decide that’s too much for today, requiring too much discussion, too much debating, too much bribing. It will make me fondly remember the days when they were too small to have a say.  When I could just plop them down in the stroller whenever it was I felt like going somewhere. Long gone.

But for right now they continue to play and I have learned enough to just leave them alone.  My inquiries often seem to break into their imaginary worlds and the quiet play ends too soon.

So instead I sit here, at my desk, in front of an open window.  The breeze is blowing softly and the sheer curtains dance.  I can hear the sound of geese.  I wonder why they’re here, aren’t they supposed to be wintering somewhere warmer by now?  I’m sure they too are confused by 14 degrees today.  I hear their honks and wonder if they are discussing it as we are.  Saying 14 degrees?  That’s very warm for January.

Or maybe they’re just enjoying the fresh air.

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It has been November for less than 12 hours but I can already feel it settling in. I can feel it in my shoulders as they stoop ever so slightly, in my face as my mouth turns down in the corners, and in my breath as it slows, tired from the very effort of inhaling and exhaling.

The November blahs have arrived. The depressing time between Halloween and Christmas when it’s too early to string the house in cheery twinkle lights and too late to pretend you’re just “sampling” the Halloween candy.

The colourful leaves that just last week looked so beautiful dotting the ground, now clump in wet piles, sticking to boots and tires, gumming up the works. They no longer look beautiful, now they just look like a mess.

The kids’ excitement at being back to school has long since worn off. I struggle to get them out of bed in the morning but can totally relate when they just want to snuggle down under the covers for a few more minutes. I wish I could pull back the blankets and climb in beside them, curling up beside their still-warm bodies and holding them close; drifting off to sleep for another hour.

It’s dark outside when I go to work. The street lights are still on, their reflection dancing off the rain drops on my windshield. If it weren’t so early I might be able to see the beauty in it. Maybe.

I go to work in the dark and come home at dusk. I sit in an office far away from any windows to the outside world. Sometimes it feels like I never see the sun. Then I realize that it feels that way because it’s true.

November has just begun and already I feel weighed down by the bulk of it. It stretches on, seemingly without end. No holidays to look forward to, no breaks from the usual routine. And in the absence of anything concrete, November becomes the month of “shoulds.”

I should get started on the Christmas shopping before things get too busy.

I should organize the closets and get rid of the old clothes.

I should give the house a good cleaning before the Christmas decorations go up in December.

I should go through the kids old toys and donate the ones they don’t play with anymore.

I should do something, anything, productive.

I should do something other than staring out the window, watching as the rain drops grow heavy on the glass and then fall, sliding down on their wayward journey to nowhere.
I should do anything other than watching the trees, now free from the weight of their leaves, bare branches swaying, waving.

I should appreciate this time, the calm before the holiday storm, because in my head I know it will be December all too soon. December, when the “shoulds” are replaced with “musts” and there is no time to contemplate the rain drops or the trees.

I should at least try; try to find the beauty in November; try to appreciate it for all it is and all it isn’t.

I will try.

(Sigh)

I will start tomorrow.

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