Snow can be  a blessing.

Snow can be a blessing. Credit: Newsday / Alejandra Villa

As an adult, I may be in the minority of people here on Long Island who relish a good blizzard, but I think any artistic person would be hard pressed to deny the beauty that snow creates.

The climate on Long Island has changed drastically since I was a child growing up in the country-like setting that was Amityville in the ’50s and ’60s. Mostly, the winters were different.

It was not uncommon to have snow — much snow — during the winter months.

As a 64-year-old, I still pray for snow. I don’t know what the need represents. It may have something to do with the hope of having a glorious white Christmas, or maybe I simply love nature’s ability to wipe the slate clean — turning landscapes and objects into one glistening tapestry.

It is humbling to be stopped in one’s tracks, literally, sometimes! The world around us is swaddled in a welcoming silence.

What are my childhood memories of snow? So many lovely magical images flood my mind!

I remember going to bed at night, looking out of my bedroom window at the winter sky. Tex Antoine, a weather forecaster on TV at the time, had said there was a chance of snow. That magical word. Even at night, I could see the sky was that dark, heavy color of steel blue. A sky almost bruised, swelling and full of mystery. Churning, unseen magical forces were at work behind the midnight blue canvas in the sky. Something was being conjured . . . You could feel it. The frigid air was pregnant with that divine stillness that precedes the birth of something sacred.

And then, the first visible flakes. OOOHHHH! The sweet anticipation would there be more? Yes! One by one, with large spaces of winter sky in between. But soon, more flakes dropping more quickly. Something new, something beautiful was happening.

I would force myself into bed, happy, excited. I would not look out again until morning. No — I’d never last that long! Sometime later, I’d slip out of bed to see if I’d be thrilled or disappointed.

Oh, the feeling of satisfaction when I saw the roof, lawn, field and woods blanketed with snow! The fact this event was so peaceful and visually exquisite also had the power to close schools! That took the grandeur of the event to another level!

The only thing better would be snow for Christmas.

Laura Houston Neville,



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