March 11, 2017

The Beautiful Deceit called Snow

Lush winter trees - covered in snow

"Wow yaar! Snowing? It must be awesome, you are so lucky", one day I was talking to a friend in US when I was in India. This is the most natural and first reaction of anybody who has not experienced snow. Especially when the sun is the most beloved and loyal friend of your country. 

When I reached US (east coast) in the summer, I was very eager for winter. Snow was on my mind :)  However, every person I met would make sad faces and then mock at me, probably thinking of their first winter and first snow; and eventually hating the word snow. 

Soon, winter arrived. One night, snow was forecast and I was thrilled. Next morning, we all woke up to white, very white scenes outside. It was just beyond beautiful. I took my camera out, did my bit to capture the scenes. We all wore all sorts of extra layers from coats to gloves, played in the snow, threw snow at each other. So far, much fun. My little one took snow in containers and continued playing and cutting snow with her toy knife inside the comfort of the temperature controlled home.

Now, let's move to the real world; break the snow-is-fun bubble. Our apartment staff are so prompt, they get to work as soon as the snow starts piling up. The roads are cleared, the sidewalks are cleared, any parking area where they find no car is also cleared at the opportunity. If we have to go out for any purpose, our first job is to clean the snow off the car..and that is some job! Takes some strength and that, in bleak, chilly weather - could be exceedingly windy too if you are having a bad day. Driving in snow or after snowfall is another horror story; referring to black ice - a thin layer of ice on the road (almost invisible) - cars may skid on black ice. If the snowfall was very heavy, we may have to endure the frosty weather for the next couple of days too. 

What does all this mean? This spectacular natural occurance called snow has a deceptive soul. It makes us fall head over heels in love with it and in turn gives us all the agony and pain possible. Snow is like the attractive villian in movies who allures you and then traps you. Or like Reliance who enters your life through freebies and then charges you in pretty installments.

Right after my first snow experience, I understood what made my friends sad when I said I was waiting for winter in summer!! Today, as I write, it is snowing outside - maybe the last one for this season. I had some little purple flowers growing outside my door.. they are now covered in snow, bet they won't resurrect. See, snow is such a baddie - in disguise of a natural wonder.

The flowers that were..

Having said all this, each time Ms. Snow (I would like to believe it's a female because of its inherent cunning nature, now don't make me elaborate nor apologise) makes its special appearance, I am still amazed by its incredible beauty and each time I get the camera out hoping to get a better picture which can do justice to the beauty that it is. And each time the camera fails me. Yet, I send pictures to my folks who have not witnessed this splendour..I get the same reply I gave months ago.. "Wow!" I really am happy I could have my own 'first time' with snowfall. The tiny, fluffy flakes swaying in the air silently, slowly and steadily making its presence felt on the ground is a sight we could watch all the time persistently. 

Snow is that guest in our home we all love to welcome but do not want to play host for, for long. Snow is that 'Tapli'*, that occassional reminder from God to appreciate, love and make the most of sun and its counterpart - summer.

Summer trees - frozen branches

*Hindi for: a slight blow on the back of the head - love the sound of!

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