When you’re a kid growing up in the South, you think snow is pretty darn cool when it happens. You build a snowman, have snowball fights, and generally trudge through it, dressed like one of the kids in “A Christmas Story”. And you think to yourself, “how cool would it be to have this to play in, All. Winter. Long? More cancelled school days; more snowballs, more snowmen! More time to ride my horse! Ah, yes! That would be the life.”
Ok. Well maybe I was the only kid in the South that thought that.
Can I take it all back now that I live in the North? I’m just so conflicted. It’s not that I don’t love snow. Because let’s face it, snow rocks. You can’t ski without it. You can’t sled without it, which, by the way, Zach is going to take me sledding, and if it weren’t for snow, I think Christmas would be boring. There’s something romantic about it. Something magical. I love a fresh dusting in the morning. There’s something peaceful and soothing about it. Until you have to get up and do chores in it. Every. Single. Day. Until you have to get out and trudge through it to open water. Until you have to get out in it to take out the trash. To go to town. To do anything. Then it’s not so much fun. Until there’s no place to ride your horse.
Here’s a concept that might very well be foreign to some of you. If it snows in November, chances are it’s not melting until April. Yes, you read that right. April. That’s almost 6 full months of snow on the ground. It is cold for a long enough period of time, that people ice fish. Think “Grumpy Old Men”; in real life. The Missouri River, upon which our ranch is located, is over a mile wide in some places and it freezes solid. How solid, you may ask? Solid enough to drive across. There is often 2 ft or more of ice on the river. They sell ice augers here so you can drill holes for your fishing, or water your livestock. Now it’s beyond me why anyone would want to sit outside in sub-zero temps and try to catch “the big one” but they do it. I hear it’s good for helping you go through a supply of schnapps or whiskey. I’m sure that’s true. You’ve got to keep warm somehow. Actually, I have also heard that some people take propane heaters with them, and put them inside their ice fishing tents. Oh, did I forget to mention the tents? Yes. The local farm supply store has a beautiful display of ice fishing tents, right inside the front door. Because we wouldn’t want to miss them, right? The one pictured to the right, costs about $700 and seats three anglers with a table in the middle so you can have a handy place for bait, gear and beverages.
I really do pretty good in not complaining about the snow, so you may wonder why I chose today to discuss this. I suppose there’s a few different reasons.
1. I found a frozen egg in my hen house this morning that I missed yesterday.
2. I am supposed to leave for Texas on Monday. But do you know what we have coming tonight? More snow (a 90% chance), and winds of 45mph. That really equals blizzard conditions.
3. If I could explain to y’all how cold it looks outside today maybe you’d understand. It’s been snowing on and off, and not only is the ground EVERYWHERE white, but the sky is too. Trust me when I tell you it looks like something from Antarctica that you’d see on the NatGeo channel!
Now don’t anyone get their panties all ruffled and say, “Well you shouldn’t complain. You’re the one that chooses to live in the frozen north”. Because it’s true, I do. It doesn’t mean that I have to like all the snow. Seeing the sun once in a while would be nice. I still haven’t been able to get my Christmas garlands down yet, and yesterday I found the MJ Dog chewing up a velvet ribbon. She had great fun with it of course. Needless to say I wasn’t exceptionally thrilled with her choice of chew toy. We have more cows coming today too, which means more work for Zach.
I guess the only thing to do on a day like today is cook some comfort food. There’s not much better for warming the mind, soul, and body than food (oh, and let’s don’t forget it helps warm the house too!), so if you’ll excuse me I’m going to put on some short ribs.
Let me know how y’all deal with the cold if you have to; and if any of you felt the same way as me, that is until you read this post!