When I think of Mackinac Island in the winter, it is with the wistful spirit of a south Georgia woman who hasn’t had nearly enough snow in her life. I think some of that may be just the human condition of always wanting what we don’t have.
I’m pretty sure there are folks up north who dream of winters spent in Florida – warm beaches, sunglasses, big umbrellas in the sand (and tiny ones in tall, cool drinks), waves lapping up to toes (but not far enough to wet the beach blanket), and seagulls and pelicans doing dips and dives into the surf after fish and other sea creatures. People in California probably yearn for time in New York, and Texas residents may dream of having a little cottage in New England.
But I dream of snow. I know I’ve written variations on this theme before, and I know y’all are probably tired of hearing it. But it’s such a part of me now that I could probably write at least a few sentences about my love of snow every single day.
When did my romance with snow begin? I can tell you exactly.
Many, many years ago – a long, long time before Ted – I sat with friends at a table in Helen, GA. We had gone up for a late Fall weekend in the mountains of north Georgia and were surprised beyond belief when, just as we were going to dinner, it began to snow. It was the second time I’d ever seen snow and the first time I’d ever seen more than a few flurries. We had reservations at a small charming restaurant off the beaten path and part-way up a mountain – actually it was an old home whose rooms had been turned into private little hideaways, with only a table or two sharing the same space. Beautiful music was playing softly throughout the house, and somehow we were fortunate enough to be seated at a window.
I have no recollection at all of what I ate that night or even if the food was good. All I remember is sitting at that window, chin propped on my hand, staring dreamily through lacey curtains as snow silently fell, settling on tree limbs and the front porch of this old house. I could see the lights of a small town below us, twinkling off and on through the big, fluffy snowflakes. I fell in love with snow that evening – the beauty, romance, stillness, silence and dignified grace of it. I can pull that night up at will and remember being filled with the quiet joy of that scene. It remains one of my fondest memories.
While searching for blog material today I kept going back to snow photos from Mackinac. The ones below are shared by Greg Main, who spends his winters (and summers) on the island.
I know my love affair with snow is viewed with the biased eyes of one who has never lived with it day after day, or dealt with the miseries it brings to daily living and travel. No, my affair with snow is “pure as the driven” Mackinac version – no cars to pollute it, no garbage thrown on top of it, no traffic jams caused by it. Seeing Mackinac in the snow transports me back to the scene from that north Georgia window so many years ago. And that’s the vision I choose to cling to over the years.
Loved todays blog!.Living in Ohio we get snow off and on. No big snows like we used to. The pictures were great.
Having never lived in a “land with no snow”, I cannot imagine life without winter and the snow. Yes, we may curse some mornings as we scrape off the windshield – again; and when the snow blower has to be repaired or the plow fills in the end of the driveway; but quite frankly, I would miss it terribly if I were to move to a more temperate climate. There’s something magical about snowfall; to be the first one to make footprints in a fresh fall makes you feel like a kid again – reading the animal and bird prints in the snow never fails to amuse me; there’s also a silence that accompanies a snowfall, unlike anything else I’ve experienced. Christmas lights look their finest when twinkling through the snow. So yes – we may get fed up with it; scream with frustration when the roof has to be shoveled off again; or a road we need to use is closed again – but boy I would miss it! Loved hearing your memories of your L’amour de la neige. Have a good week.
I couldn’t have said it any better Deborah!! So true!
I too love watching the snow fall and how the tree branches look, ladened down with the weight of the snow. What I don’t like is a drive to work that takes me normally 20 minutes, took me almost 2 hours last week and the roads were barely snow covered. What I don’t like is driving on icy roads and freezing temps. What I would like is Mackinac Island in the snow!! So I am with you on just about everything you said. LOL 🙂
I was so lucky to be on the island when it snowed last week. The flakes were huge and beautiful! It looked like a living snowglobe. Though I didn’t try it, the snow skiing was perfect according to Stephanie McGreevy.
Today in southern Iowa it was 73 degrees! Crazy! Because Tony hates the cold and winter, last month I booked us a trip to the Gulf Shores for the end of March. At this rate, we could skip the trip and just stay home and enjoy 70 degree weathe! Lol!
For a gal who grew up in the Midwest, i just take snow for granite. But It is wonderful that u had the experience and got to enjoy God’s winter creation!
Ditto what Deborah said! I have lived in Wisconsin all of my 65 years and cannot imagine Christmas without snow. There is that awesome stillness in the air and quiet in the streets. That is until the snow plows come through all night long. Love the pictures! I can remember bundling up our girls in their snowsuits, plopping them on a sled and going for walks in the fresh snow. Now I am content to watch it from inside!
See! I knew I’d have some northern readers with a little love in their hearts for the white stuff!
Loved the pictures. Having lived my whole like in Mishawaka, IN, snow has always been apart of my life. I remember the blizzard of 1978. In trying to get ready for the snow they called for and do it with a husband with his arm in a cast from surgery the week before was not something I looked forward to. I did have a 14 year old son and a 7 year old in the house to help. Also, had good neighbors to help us get the walks shoveled, garage roof cleaned and many other things done. Kids had so much for the 2 weeks off school. I was ready for them to go back. So I don’t wish for that again but I do love snow.
This winter hardly any snow has been with us but………….. You never know.
Deborah did a great job explaining many of the ways I love snow, too. I remember Mom sending us outside with a magnifying glass when we were kids to look at the snowflakes, and shoveling snow in the glow from the streetlights. And the quiet. Love the stillness. As long as you don’t have to go to work or anywhere else when the roads are bad!
Now, when it gets to spring, I’ll be waxing eloquently about the smell of the earth and the buds and the birds! I love the change of seasons – all four of them. Guess I’m a true Midwesterner through and through! Thanks for the gorgeous photos, too!
I imagine living on Mackinac in snow is a wonderful experience. Beautiful, quiet, slow. I like snow, but when it adds an extra 90 minutes onto my commute one way because people forget how to drive, I like it a lot less. Probably the same way you think of the seagulls pooping and the water getting the beach blanket wet, etc. 🙂
You said of the snow, “the beauty, romance, stillness, silence and dignified grace of it” and that’s certainly true. I remember walking home from the movies as the snow slowly drifted down. It was so beautiful, especially at the street corners with the street lights. I even liked wading snow drifts as I walked home after work as a bellhop in Cheboygan when I was in high school. But now that I’m pushing 80 years old, although it’s still just the way you described it, I can’t enjoy it, especially when I have to drive in it. I just worry about what if… What if something goes wrong with the car? What if I slide off the road and have to walk someplace for help? Really, I would probably die before I was able to get to where I could get help. So long story short, Both Faye and I just stay inside when it snows, unless we just absolutely need to get out. Nevertheless, I do appreciate the beautiful pictures of Mackinac Island in the snow. Yes, I would like to spend the winter in a warmer, easier place, but since that’s not going to happen, I’ll just be thankful for the day that the Lord has made, and be very happy in each day.
All of us are happy to hear that you and Faye stay inside when it snows. You are both treasured and we don’t want anything to happen to either of you.
I bet you were a great bellhop back in the day! LOL!
Very nice blog update indeed. The pictures and story are very Charles Dickens”esk”
Gorgeous! Thx for this lovely post!
You actually made me see the beauty of a snowfall again in your eyes! Beautifully written!
It is good for us to remember the times the snow is beautiful, instead of being frustrated with travel problems and the dinginess of “old” snow. Those things do happen, but there are definitely “pretty” snows, too! Possibly Friday here, after a week of record-breaking warmth!