When I opened the morning paper this morning and saw the prediction of snow to come, the first thought that came to my mind was, “Sounds like I’m going to get my exercise tomorrow!”
I live in Flagstaff, Arizona where even though we are in the midst of a drought, falling snow is a familiar occurrence in the winter months.
But I wasn’t always familiar with it. As a matter of fact, growing up in the Florida panhandle — Pensacola to be exact — during the 1950’s, I had never seen it until I was in high school and a short snow flurry introduced me to this unfamiliar white stuff that fell from the sky.
My boyfriend at the time — who has been my husband for 62 years — was stationed in Milton at the time with the Navy. Being from California and much more traveled than I was, he enjoyed teasing me about the many things that I was unfamiliar with. He even brought me a piece of styrofoam (which wasn’t commonplace as it is now) and told me it was dehydrated snow and I almost fell for it.
The next time I saw snow was as a freshman at Judson College in Marion AL when several inches blanketed the town.
Just a year later, I stood on the Capital grounds as a young bride of 18 after a major snowstorm and watched JFK say those magical words as he became President. The months that Ron and I, as a newly-married couple, lived in D.C. made me more familiar with snow than I ever wanted to be. But it gave me the opportunity to learn to drive in it, to buy gloves and hats that I had never had the need for in Florida, and to even get our car stuck in it.But that wasn’t the end of my journey learning to experience snow. When his Navy tour of duty ended, we moved to Santa Cruz — on the coast of central California where there were more new experiences but no snow.
Snow — something that I am very familiar with now but have wonderful memories of those first experiences.