Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Snow Day

It is 4:00 AM. The silence is perfect. I lie absolutely still in my bed, savoring it.

There are no cars rushing by. No stirring sounds of the neighborhood reluctantly wrenching itself awake. No bustle of any sort. Even my dogs seem mesmerized by the stillness of the morning. When the hum of the furnace sounds from my basement, it seems a profanation, a defilement of something too rare to be other than sacred.

I rise, don robe and slippers, and shuffle out to confront the morning.

Snow has blanketed all I can see. Mechanized movement is impossible. No business will be transacted today. Ambition and consumption have been put on hold. Long Island is closed.

I smile.

Days such as this are reminders of many things, and spurs to many more. No, I'm not talking about shovels, snowblowers, or nitroglycerin pills. Nature's enforcement of stillness rewrites our agendas. It compels us to revisit our priorities, if only briefly, and write postponed against the ones that usually stand at the top of the list. We take time for the "lesser" things, the rei domesticae that usually languish in preference for motion and action. We resurrect older patterns of life, with their lowered tempi of obligations and pleasures.

We can relax. Our habitual frenzies have been taken from us by force. We luxuriate in the suspension of our urgencies and the agita from them. There need be no guilt about it, for we have no choice.

We need days like this one.

The C.S.O. will be up soon. I know exactly what she'll do, after two cups of coffee and a quick review of the major news sites: She'll bake. Snow days send her to the oven as reliably as the salt-spreaders to the roads. When the house has filled up with cookies, cupcakes, and assorted pastries whose names I can never remember -- sorry, Yiddish isn't one of my competences -- she'll put on her snow boots and march up and down the block offering her creations to our neighbors.

Rufus and Sophie will spend much of the day romping around in the snow, and most of the rest of it being toweled off. Our cats will watch them from respectable indoor comfort.

I'll write and think. I'll "putter," casting about in leisurely fashion for the little jobs I too frequently walk past with a grimace and a grumble of "maybe later." Later on I'll build a fire and set up the potpourri crocks. I'll indulge in a few long thoughts, the sort that are inherently unfinished. I'll enjoy a little of that guilt-free relaxation, perhaps to an accompaniment of Schubert and Sandeman's Tawny Port.

And I'll smile.

Praise God, from Whom all blessings flow.


Peter said...

Schubert and Sandemans . . . great combination! Thanks for the inspiration. I think I'll indulge in a little Tallis and a glass of Fonseca.


Backwoods Engineer said...

Praise Him, indeed. I appreciate your site and posts, Mr. Poretto.

I started the day today reading "Which Art in Hope" which is interesting so far :-)

pdwalker said...

That sounds like a very, good, day.

Jess said...

That sounds really awesome.