A clap of thunder shook me out of my twin bed and sent me running to the window. Snow. Snow that was deep enough to take away the definition of the front yard by smoothing the contour of the land. The snow united us, giving our neighborhood one communal front yard, no longer separated by driveways and the street — which were probably still there, possibly gone… I couldn’t really tell. Hours later, a city plow would erase the blanket and bring back the definition of the road, but not in time for school. Wait! School!! TV on! Channel 7!
WXYZ TV’s Erik Smith was announcing a growing trove of school closings. Garden City came early in the alphabetically organized list, though our school Superintendent made the call later than other districts, perhaps wondering “well… is it really snowy enough?” When Broadcaster Smith finally announced the late addition of Garden City, I pumped my fist as Mom rolled her eyes at my exuberance. My legs tickled. I joyously asked her if she heard the thunder. She said no. She said we don’t usually get thunder with snow, and then something about my tympanic membrane. Ah, but then the weatherman said that yes, we do sometimes get a thunderbolt of lightning (very, very frightening) with snow. It was a winter thunderstorm, a rattling alert that it had snowed many snows.
22 years later there was many snow. No thunder, but many snow. Erik Smith has long since retired and now the Superintendent calls each of us personally to let us know that school is closed. Malachi is exuberant and I roll my eyes. Testimony: cabin fever is very real. I busted out my analog calendar to count the days since our kids have been in a school building, and the number I discovered was astounding: many days. I didn’t really count because I’m in the 2014 calendar, and the 2013 calendar has been retired. Besides, one loses count after so much crazy. “Let’s see… did I eat 137 or 138 chicken nuggets?” is a phrase often heard from the back of an ambulance.
With all this snow (many snow), I do wonder if they’ll have school tomorrow. After being gone for so long, it may feel like the first day again, only colder.
Memo: we need to make sure that Malachi doesn’t wear the same pants he’s been wearing around the house during the break, for they have taken on the consistency of a tortilla shell.
Observation: Teachers like snow days, too.