The First Snowfall of the Season

First Snowfall in Altoona, Wisconsin

For most of the last 25 years, the first snowfall of the season was also the last. I lived in the Pacific Northwest (on the rainy side of the Cascades) and, before that, in the Washington, D.C., area. I missed enjoying four distinct seasons, and I especially missed the snow.

When I was a little kid, I lived in central Wisconsin. I built snowmen and made snow angels. I caught snowflakes on frozen black construction paper to see their delicate designs. I jumped off the roof into snowdrifts (don’t try this at home). On the walk to and from school (uphill both ways), my brother and I played King of the Mountain on the snow piled up on the side of the road. We iceskated on Grace’s Pond and tobogganed down Indian Hill.

Then I moved away from the Midwest. I ended up in places too far south or too close to the Pacific Ocean. All winter, I would check the forecast to see whether snow was the way. If it was, childlike anticipation would build up in me. I prayed for enough snow to render us all snowbound (fortunately, that didn’t take much in these snow-deprived locales). When the snow came, I was enchanted, and I made the most of it. Then the snow melted, and I wouldn’t see it again for another year. As quickly as it had come, it was gone.

That’s one of the reasons why I’m here, back in Wisconsin. I moved here on November 4. On November 13, we got about three inches of snow. Beautiful, enchanting snow. I took this picture of the river and hill behind my place.

I have the same childlike wonder and joy as I always have. But, this time, I know that the first snowfall of the season will not be the last.

One Comment on “The First Snowfall of the Season

  1. Love your story. Looking forward to hearing more of your new adventure!

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