I don't have many nice things to say about Maryland winters. They aren't particularly pretty. They are cold enough to want to keep you indoors, but not long enough to teach you to properly prepare for them. If they were colder and longer, you might buy the right clothing. You might get excited about winter activities, get involved with winter sports. You might be forced to engage with the elements. However, Maryland winters are short enough that you know you can get away with waiting them out, but the waiting has the
affect of making them feel longer and colder than they really are. It's a vicious cycle.
One of the few things I do appreciate about the season is the constant hope of a snow storm. Almost any snow in Maryland cripples us because we aren't prepared the way states who actually get substantial amounts of snow are. So whenever an inch or two falls, schools are canceled and roads become almost undriveable. Everyone stops and rests for a few hours while winter has her way. Almost any examination of a 10 day forecast throughout January and February will show at least one day with a 40 or 50 percent chance of snow. This tiny bit of hope keeps me constantly refreshing NOAA's
web page, seeing if they have increased or decreased the likelihood of perception. I remain optimistic, always eager to believe we will have a day off. This winter I have rarely gotten my wish.
All weekend, I was convinced we would have an extra long weekend: no school on Monday or Tuesday. In that spirit, I decided we should make the most of the sun shining while we could, and so we explored and picnicked. The park is perfectly eerie- a primeval bald Cyprus swamps at its northern most limits. It feels ripe with mysticism and something ancient, the knobby knees of trees peeking out of the swampy shallows, hawks circling above, though my shadowed fantasies were interrupted by children excited about arching trees and the sound of birds and the
clementines they snuck in their pockets.
The wintry mix didn't come, not yet at least. But that doesn't mean you won't find me frantically checking the weather, hoping that maybe tomorrow will bring snow and quiet moments indoors, a chance to catch up on sleep and laundry.