Monday, November 27, 2006

More snow

After being dry and cold in Seattle today, it's snowing again this evening. Not much, maybe another half an inch, but enough to be absolutely beautiful piling up on grass and blowing through the air. The big, white flakes are glistening under the street lights and occasionally the dog will bark as one hits the window.
Sitting here on the couch, watching the snow fall against the living room windows, I can't help but feel a little homesick for Boone. A small town in the northwest mountains of North Carolina, it was home to Brandon and me for the first four years of our marriage. We moved there to finish college and to start a new life on our own. It will always be one of my favorite places. It's an isolated little town (or at least it used to be)in the Appalachian Mountains. It's home to limitless outdoor beauty, Appalachian State University, and a whole community of the most friendly, sincere people you'll ever meet. We left because we knew that this place did not hold the keys to our future, but it will always hold a place in our hearts.
Back to the snow...Growing up in eastern North Carolina, snow was a big deal. It only came once a year, maybe twice if we were lucky, and was usually gone within a day or two. In Boone, you could easily expect to see snow a few times a month from mid-Fall well into the Spring. Most of the time it was just the right amount, enough to remind you that it was winter, but not enough to cause any problems. I remember those times fondly, but it's some of the bigger storms that stand out in my memories.
The first place we lived in Boone was a nice apartment at the top of the hill above the University. If not for the trees, we easily could have seen football stadium. We moved in at the beginning of January before Spring semester. During that first week, a huge snow storm swooped in, dropping about a foot of snow. We bundled up and headed out to play. We met some other students out doing the same. Soon we were sledding and having snowball fights like we were 10 years old again. Being veterans of the area, they took us to a nearby hill to sled. It was huge. I'd never been so frightened and exhilarated at the same time before. I loved it.
The next big storm I remember was one year later. For some bizarre reason, we decided to rent a small house about 30 minutes out of town. It was literally in a holler right on the Tennessee border. It was a great place to live, but I still wonder what we were thinking sometimes. We planned on moving the week before school started. We made all the plans, picked a day, and rented a truck. How were we to know that a massive snow storm was slated for that day? Being young and naive, we decided to carry on with the move. I'll tell you there are not many things scarier than driving a moving van full of all your belongings, in frigid weather, near white out conditions, along windy mountain roads, with at least six inches of snow on the ground. The highlight of the move was not settling into our new home, but meeting some of our new neighbors. In attempting to back the truck into the driveway, the tires slipped on the snowy incline and one wheel fell into the ditch alongside it. While we stood there trying to figure out what to do, a pickup truck came down the dirt mountain road toward us. It had to stop because we were blocking their passage. An older man got out and asked if we need any help. (Not the sharpest stick, huh?) Mind you it's still pouring down snow. After assessing the situation, he generously offers the use of his sons to help us unload the truck and then try to pull it out. Yeah! We might make it out of this after all. While talking to us, he turned to his pre-teen son and said "Boy, go git me my beer out of the truck." Which he promptly did. (It was an open beer too. You just can't make this stuff up.) Eventually, it all turned out OK. Well, maybe except for the bumper of the man's truck that didn't fair so well when he tied the chain to it instead of the frame when trying to yank our moving van from the ditch.
I could go on with the snow stories and others, and maybe another day I will. However, the point I wanted to make is that there are places and times that will always be special in some bizarre way even if you didn't realize it at the time.


Anonymous said...

Great story. I'm laughing. Never heard it before probably because we tried to discourage ya'll from moving to the boonies. Have to admit it was a pretty place. Interesting too. Elk farm across the road.
Love, Mom P

Anonymous said...

Just brings to mind the true meaning of "Git er dun!"
We've got some wonderful snow stories/memories too that your blog has conjured to our minds. Thanks.
Love, Mom