Wednesday, January 25, 2012


One warm day with fog was all it took for the snow to disappear literally overnight. Oh, a few patches of it remained this morning, but with rain in the forecast for tonight, whatever may remain will certainly be gone. The feeder birds have already disappeared, gone back to their natural food supply and ignoring my offerings. I’m sure they will return whenever the next blast of winter reappears.

The warm winter evenings have tempted me outside my cabin on more than one occasion lately. When the wind is calm, walking in the woods at night is a rare pleasure. Two nights ago I could smell the snow, all crisp and cold. I didn’t take a headlamp, as white snow underfoot is just as good or even better. A thin slice of moon curled just above the horizon, a deep orange.

By summer, underbrush impedes such off-trail meanderings, which accounts for the rarity of such an adventure. I try to look at everything, to memorize the sky, the moon. I draw the winter scents deeply into my lungs, somehow hoping they won’t disappear as soon as I’m inside again. I never know how long it might be before another chance to wander at night comes my way. Better to take advantage while I can.

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