Winter; some love it, some hate it. In my family, winter is more than just a season, it’s a time for endless joy. There is nothing like the feeling of waking up and seeing a thick blanket of snow has descended from the heavens onto the frozen ground. For miles around not a spec of vegetation is visible, it has all been devoured by the soft, blank flakes of fluffy good stuff. A hush falls over the satisfied mountains, for their eager wishes to once again be doused in beauty have finally been granted.
The cool air stinging my nose, the taste of winter on my tongue. I take it all in with a deep breath, and let it out with a smile. The Snow Gods have sent the message I have been waiting for, winter has arrived.As far back as memory lane will take me, there isn’t a year that I don’t remember my family’s annual Snow God party.
Every November, grandparents, aunts. uncles, cousins and friends, near and far, will gather at the Daly household to celebrate the season that brings us closest together.There are many ongoing traditions to this special assembly of snow worshipers.
One being the unbelievable transformation that our garage undergoes. It starts as a musty mess and turns into a gourmet buffet decked out with the finest of family recipes. Another is our makeshift snow pile. Ice from the nearest hockey rink is carted in by garbage can and dumped on the lawn to serve as a communal cooler.Above all, the most decadent ritual is the massive bonfire. It crackles, it roars, it gets the attention of the Snow Gods as the sparks are carried into their territory in the clouds and they know, duty calls. To build a fire as almighty as such, it has to be fed with the finest of wood.
Nothing better suits the job than retired ski and snowboard equipment. The scratch of every turn that is engraved into the wood of each ski, the cracks in every snowboard that states it was put to good use, tells the Snow Gods the stories of our fondest on-snow memories. As the waxes, wood and metal bindings of the burning sacrifices blend together in a fiery rage, the “Ode To The Snow Gods”, which was written by my uncle, is read allowed for all.“-Thus let me hold thy snow to heart, Then every care resigns, And shall we never ski apart, My life, and all thats mine.” This is last stanza of the lengthy poem, but it’s what truly hits home in our hearts. Winter is not a time of year, it is a lifestyle. Its what I yearn for, what I desire.
It is beauteous, soundless, and peaceful. It is the path lead by the Gods of Snow that I am going to follow to my hearts content.
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