For some folks, this post might be a bit too late. You may have experienced spring and even summer for possibly months now. For me, Fort Collins has had brief warm days but nothing consecutive. We even had a snow storm only 5 days ago. The official last freeze date for the Front Range of Colorado is May 15th. All the pictures in this post are from this past winter.
This be an acknowledgement, recognition, and farewell to the season in which brings a chill to my fingers and a frozen tear to my eye. As the last spring snow storm blew through the Front Range of Colorado this past week and the little ponds fill up with baby goslings, I recall the days when those ponds were frozen and green grass remained a distant memory.
Winter you brought me powder dumps and snowboard falls, embedded whiteness in my eye, and contributed to an always chilly, red nose. I know you miss the days when I would damage your fresh powdered morning with my snow angels and boot prints. We had our falling outs, however, when I griped about the inches you buried my car in or when I would slip on sidewalks you glazed with your ice and sludge.
I would peek out my frozen window to watch the millions of snowflakes fly by with the wind. My heart would flutter for a snow fallen view. Your falling snow captivated me: completely governed by the wind, flowing together for the ride.
No matter what emotions I might wake up with, if freshly fallen snow was on the ground in the morning, I knew I would have a good day. The sun beamed down on the whiteness creating a glitter and gleam. As bright as the sun shined, no warmth would exist. To photograph the views of undisturbed flakes, I ventured early. Long johns, pants, tall socks, thermal shirt, light jacket, down jacket, gloves, mittens, beanie, and boots enveloped me. Your temperature shocked me at -8 degrees Fahrenheit.
With camera in hand, I would seek the quest to capture the perfect picture. The perfect picture to best portray the beauty of fresh powder, of beautiful snowflakes, of sunny Colorado. I loved stepping in deep powder. The texture of the snow resisted any snowball. Snow so preserved and dry perfect snowflakes could be seen caught onto branches of trees. The top layer of powder required a second look. Snowflakes laid in perfect shape. My amazement ruined their formation as I struggled to form a snowball. The snowball never existed. The snow simply fell like the driest sand.
I would wander to the pond with some effort from the foot of snow. Geese played in the only spot in the pond that had yet to freeze over. My face started to feel beyond cold. My face burned. I internalized the impressive tolerance the geese had for this frigid cold. I felt bashful for a moment about my goose down jacket.
The pond and the geese freeze in posture as the seasons change. I look now through my glass pane only imagining a winter wonderland. Snow and ice vanished, exposing the ponds for fowl play. No more chances of snow; nothing of a storm blowing in the best of hydrogen bonds known as snowflakes.
The warm weather teases and tantalizes me. I’m flirting with spring but missing the season in which engulfs me in my warmest clothes and begs me to play in the feet of powder. No more small talk about the amount of snow we received the weekend before. No more sneaky snowballs to throw or waterproof boots to live in. Gone are the days full of blinding white views. Snow no longer causes the trees to lean and frump from the weight of the winter’s snow tuft.
With summer quickly approaching now, my lust for winter is only a faint memory. I might climb a mountain and see a bit of winter’s remnants but winter’s time is over.
The only ice will be in my iced tea and the only snow will be drenched in syrup and in a cone.