After not being able to enjoy the big snow fall for the past several days, I was so anxious for a run in the snow! I was cabin bound from Wednesday to Saturday. I could not open my doors for a couple of days due to all the snow coming off of my medal roof and piling on my deck that surrounds my cabin. The natural fall was at least 20 inches. Just double that, and you have the height of snow against my doors and covering my dog food and wood pile! Needless to say I felt a bit overwhelmed considering what it would take to shovel the doors open, so I decided to take Scarlet O’Hara’s advice from Gone with the Wind, and “think about that tomorrow.” I achieved enough of a crack to be able retrieve some of the fresh snow for snow cream, and I consoled myself by eating enough to turn my lips purple and set my body to shivering uncontrollably. I had to counter my previous actions with hot cups of coconut milk and Ghirardelli chocolate. In addition I made a pot of chili con carne’ and Mexican cornbread considering all the calories I would burn hiking the Appalachian Trail with the barefoot sisters…
A dear friend of mine sent me a new book, Southbound written by Lucy and Susan Letcher. They were the two sisters who hiked the Appalachian Trail barefoot. The package arrived the day before the snow so I thoroughly enjoyed the adventures it provided as I sat curled up by the fire.
Thankfully I had enough wood inside to carry me through to the next day. I have a heat pump and gas logs down stairs, but I prefer wood heat. It is the only heat that warms me on the inside. I love the smell, the beauty of the fire, the sounds it sends out, and the tranquilizing affect it has on me. I don’t always love the mess from carrying in wood and all the work involved in attaining and stacking it.
I finally got my doors open and a path shoveled to the woodpile and eventually got a clearing to get to my vehicles with the help of a dear friend. He shoveled a place to park at the bottom of the drive, and hiked up the half mile of deep snow. I was so thankful for help shoveling the buried deck; not that I was going anywhere. My driveway is a half mile off the main road, and my cabin resides on the top of a mountainous hill. There were huge drifts all down the drive. I had tried to get professional help, but to no avail.
What wasn’t so wonderful in all my excitement of the snow was it being drifted by high winds which made it impossible to keep snow out of my boots to go walking. I knew I couldn’t run in snow this deep for very long, but walking was too much effort as well. I retreated back inside the cabin after feeding and petting my dog. I carried in wood and resupplied my inside wood rack. I knew if I stayed cabin bound many more days, I would make my debut looking more like a snow man than a personal trainer.
After our warm, sunny day on Sunday a lot of snow melted. So Monday morning I headed out with Lady Godiva, my chocolate lab for a run. I was so happy to finally get to enjoy being in the snow. Up to this point, I had only experienced a lot of snow in me due to the amounts of snow cream I had ingested! I had to walk down my drive which had rows of pure ice from the thawing of yesterday. We still had plenty of snow to enjoy.
The air was so fresh and clean as I began an easy jog after descending my drive. Godiva was elated to have my companionship after being alone a couple of days. I felt like I imagine a drug addict feels tripping! I drank in the beauty of a deep blue sky contrasting the white snow. I basked in the warmth of the sun on my face. I truly felt intoxicated by my senses absorbing all my surroundings. I listened to the swollen creeks flowing and observed through the crystal clear water a perfect view of all that lay on the bottom. I ran by cattle and horses munching contentedly on hay the farmers had spread. A familiar sound of a crow broke the silence temporarily, and I watched him fly over. There are natural highs to be had if you are willing to take the trip outdoors.
I returned home after my time of ecstasy in a harmonious world. I felt the physical benefits of a stronger body after working muscles that had been on vacation. Even more gratifying is the peace and contentment of what running outdoors does for me spiritually and mentally.
I survived my snow days quite well and enjoyed the forced vacation. I so treasured the unscheduled time. My definite conclusion was the inconvenience of the snow was far outweighed by the peaceful rest it enforced, and the beauty it brought to the dullness of winter. I will anxiously await another visit from one of the greatest wonders of winter.