Deep Freeze - Then Thaw
The days have been going by in a blur. I am meeting my goal of walking often and my mind is full of moons and cold windy dusk and dawn. It seams that the light of the moon hangs over my shoulder just like a well placed mood lamp. Two weeks ago it was minus 40 with wind chill. I think that is the same in Celsius and Ferenheidt. Some people think that it is crazy to live in a place that cold - but really inside it is warm. Wearing Snowpants to work downtown in a financial services office is somewhat invigorating. It was so icy on the sidewalks that I was able to slide in my ugly purple shin high fake "cerels" (a popular must have boot style from the 80's) for a quarter of the block.
By this time of year it becomes very easy to decide what shoes are appropriate for walking outside - and what shoes are not. The cold is over now and I have seen so many different kinds of snow. When it was very cold - everything was white. Absolutely everything. Even the homeless people were not out on the streets - so it all looked very clean. The whole city started to move so slowly - people bonded just like a sporting event playoff run (red mile?). Everyone was impacted by this spell of frozeness. So the snow - it was light and almost not a solid substance. If you looked straight ahead while you walked it would be hard to tell if snow or wind were at your heels - that's how light and un-intrusive the snow was. I don't know where the birds went - but they were not making one peep for about four days. I guess bird hibernation might be a possibility. Never really considered where things go that live outside during a deep freeze - it only happens every once in a while. When it does happen - I'm always shocked by how many things there are to actually stop moving.
Now today it was 10 degrees above zero. That means that in two weeks the temperatures have changed 50 degrees! That is a major pressure change - so the sky has been a theatre of clouds and colors. Especially with the sun rising at 7 and setting around 5 - this means darkness really gets to swirl and dance. The nice thing about living in the prairies is that it is all sky out here. Just like living on the ocean really - you can stand in one spot and turn 360 degrees while watching the horizon spin around you.
So a word about the geese. They are south at my river bend of the bow for the winter. In the day they go and find whatever for food and around sunset they return. So I can stand on the edge of the river valley at sunset (the golden reds and yellows slip behind the mountain sillette) and literally hundreds of geese come to the river for their night rest. These birds are both large in size and sound - each one honking and blaying its way to the flock below like dark vessels of survival.
When I sat on top of the river bend tonight, the whole valley was alive with sound. A hard dirty crust remained as a memory of snow that blasted crunch chruch so loud you couldn't hear yourself think. There were cars moving, dogs barking and people walking. Everything alive with the thaw. But above it all if you listened in between the landing of a new flock of geese - there was a great conversation at the river between all the birds. I suppose it was not only us humans that missed out on some important business during the deep freeze.