The First Snow

There is something exciting about the first real snow of the season. I remember the sheer delight of waking up to find three or four feet of snow outside, anticipating an afternoon filled with sledding, snowballs, and snowmen. My friends and I would climb the “snow mountains” left in the parking lot by the bulldozers. We would play “King of the Mountain,” create tunnels, and build snow forts stabilized by the hot water we would pour on the walls. I miss the electricity of the first snow that I felt as a young boy.

Now, the first snow is an end to the gas-saving walks to work and school, an end to the gloveless driving, and an end to hopping in the car without having to clean the snow and ice off the windshield. Now, the first snow means walking to class with the miserable wind beating my face and nasty blue salt corroding my shoes. Now, the first snow means that final exams are coming too quickly, and Christmas break is coming too slowly. Now, the first snow feels more like the White Witch cursing Narnia than Father Christmas making his way with lovely gifts to give to all the friends of Aslan.

But, I wonder. Is the childish excitement completely lost? Can I still find joy in the first snow fall? Does the fact that I’m in college mean that I am too old for children’s fun

Maybe I’m becoming old enough to enjoy childish fun once again. Maybe I’m becoming mature enough that I can enjoy the immaturity of lobbing a snowball across the yard at a friend. Maybe ice skating, hot chocolate, and wool socks can define the winter instead of complaining about the weather. Maybe the satisfaction of thawing out finger by finger and limb by limb after romping through the snow for hours is not completely lost. Maybe, just maybe, it’s all a matter of making a choice. And I choose joy!

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