“This is the first year that we will not have snow before Halloween” Aidan and Liam looked at each other with desperation, “I bet there is afoot in Idaho already”. I sympathized. The coming of winter is a reason to celebrate in the Tetons. People there pray for the powder like the drunkard aches for a drink. It’s a way of life. It feeds the spirit and the economy of the entire valley. The only nuisance is that eventually, in the spring, it all melts away.
We woke to rain this morning. I have always liked the sound of it from a warm bed. I had paint and soup-making planned for the day, so it was well suited for my agenda.
By the time I finished my coffee, it had turned to snow and it was coming fast and hard. I headed to the market with giddy excitement to secure my soup-fixin. I was not the only one. By the time I got home, it seemed most of the city was in panic mode. Homecoming dances were canceled, streets closed, everyone bracing for the storm. Still, inside, I was secretly wishing for the mega dump that would leave us stranded at home for days on end, like the ones we had in Idaho.
I was shortly reminded of a few very distinguishable differences between NJ and Idaho. First and foremost, the east coast doesn’t get “powder”. The poor trees were bent over with the weight of the world and many had snapped. Next, there is no bathtub in this house so when the chill hits your bones, it’s hard to shake. There is no extra freezer here, let alone a pantry built to accommodate three years’ worth of food (the Mormon religion requires it apparently, and our Idaho home was built to those specifications by a believer. We converted half of it to a wine cellar – but there was still plenty of food). And, when it does dump – Grand Targhee is not right up the road.
This is the season that we will miss. This is the time that always seemed special there – because it was – it is – it always will be. We still did a jig for the snow gods, and we are excited for the coming of the season, but when the power went out halfway through my painting, and the streets turned to slush, we knew it would be a different kind of dance. And that is ok – for now.