Whenever Armando sees snow, he’s like a little kid. He can never pass a sheet of newly fallen snow without stomping his feet in it, making his mark on the smooth surface. But then again, he never grew up with snow, living in southern Mexico. Snow is still a novelty to him. Me, on the other hand, grew up in Manitoba. Enough said.
Snow meant cold temperatures, cars that wouldn’t start and scarves wrapped around your neck, forehead and everywhere in between, with only your eyes peeking through the crocheted mummy wrap. It meant extra time needed to warm up the car, put on all the extra snow apparel to help avoid frostbite and to remember to grab an extra pair of shoes before you run out the door. If you forgot the shoes, you’d be stuck wearing your boots all day at work or school and Sorels back then didn’t look so pretty with a pencil skirt. Snow meant worrying about getting stuck as you plowed your way through the snow piles towards your destination and then worrying about you car not starting at the end of the day to get you home. And just when you were getting ready for bed, you remembered that you had to go outside one last time to plug in your car so you could up your odds of it starting the next morning.
But, snow also meant making snow forts and playing street hockey with my brother. It meant getting my first pair of authentic moccasins and knowing how warm you can feel with good snow gear. The first snowfall was a sign that Christmas was around the corner, well, some years it mean Halloween was almost here. But, when Christmas finally came, it meant bundling up after our Ukrainian Christmas Eve dinner and as a family, walking off the calories in preparation for our Midnight dinner. And it was often one of those nights where the snow just sparkled. You haven’t seen snow until it sparkles like that in the evening light. Like a million stars at your feet. Beautiful!
Seeing Armando appreciate snow reminds me of the memories that it’s given me. And as I look on Facebook today and see my prairie friends posting pictures of newly fallen snow, I get a bit nostalgic. But, then I think to myself that I have enough snow memories to last me a while and instead, I look out my Port Moody window, excited to see the blue sky out. The sun shining on the bright green grass is calling my name. Time to make some BC winter memories!