<$BlogRSDURL$> Spontaneous Things: Karina Sumner-Smith's Blog
Wednesday, January 28, 2004
All That Snow

Yesterday was supposed to be my full day of classes (aka marathon class day), but the storm came instead. I woke to my alarm and left the radio on while I checked the weather situation on the internet. York said that the University was open, the weather stations said that the weather looked horrible, and I didn't know what to do until the radio DJ said, "If it is not absolutely necessary for you to go out today, don't."

"Sounds like a plan," I thought, and went back to sleep for another few hours.

Good thing, too, for while I could have made my way to York in the morning (though would have likely been very, very late) getting home would have been next to impossible. In the morning the snow had stopped for a little bit, giving people some opportunity to start clearing the snow, but in the afternoon it started again, and kept snowing, and kept snowing, and kept snowing... In the middle of the afternoon I went out to go to the corner store at the end of the street so we didn't starve in the snow, and a walk that usually takes about four or five minutes took almost fifteen. I had to walk in the middle of the road for part of the way, simply because the tire tracks were the only part I could see where I wouldn't flounder helplessly in the snow. By the time I finally made it back to the apartment, my jeans were coated in snow up to my knees, my gray hat was white with snow, and I had snow stuck in every imaginable nook and cranny of my boots and jacket and mittens ... ack.

It was rather pretty, though. Even as I was slipping and sliding my way through the drifts, face buried in my scarf, I thought how lovely it all was, in a strange sort of way. When the wind would pause, or I'd go into the shelter of the building, the snow came down so gently in big, soft flakes. And there was a quiet that you don't usually hear in the city--so few cars moving, the sounds of voices and machinery muffled by the snow.

The snow is making its way into my writing, too. A story idea hit me rather suddenly on Sunday morning, and I wrote a few hundred words before heading off to Sarah's. I'm reading Susan Cooper's The Dark is Rising series right now (which is probably my favourite YA series) and was thinking a lot about endings, and forgetting, and moving on with one's life after the magic is gone. And it started to coalesce into something resembling a story. I pondered it all the way home from Sarah's too, walking home from the subway station in the stillness with the snow drifting down. Somehow they've all become connected: snow and remembering, that sense of stillness and sorrow, the calm of the absence of memory.

The story itself is all a mess right now--bits of text and dialog and ideas floating around. We'll see what comes of it, if I can only convince my body that it's not time to hibernate, I really don't need 15 hours of sleep a day, and that this is all productive work time. (Ha.)

Posted by Karina Sumner-Smith at 7:24 PM


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