Monday, February 3, 2014

Snow Days

We live in the perfect sort of snow zone, here in the mountains of Tennessee.  It snows every winter, but never more than a few inches at a time.  Our area doesn't panic when snows hit, but schools do close and everyone makes a mad dash to the grocery store for milk, eggs and bread. 

For the snow day french toast, I figure.  

I was born and raised in northern California where it doesn't snow and it barely rains.  We used to go up to Truckee and Tahoe for a day here or there during winter break, but I never saw it snow until I moved up here.  There really isn't anything prettier than watching it snow.

I've lived outside of California for just shy of half my life-- all but the first few years of adulthood.  I've resided in North Carolina, Arizona and Tennessee, and I've zigzagged across country more times than I can remember.  No exciting reason for moving, really.  Funny how most people think there should be some romantic reason. 

Just because we could.  Or maybe a touch of wanderlust.

At any rate,  I can definitively say that Tennessee is home.

I still get excited when it snows.

We have text alert for the kids' high school and all the college campuses in the area. I'm a full time prof at one campus, Jeremy adjuncts at several and of course Bayley (Thing 1) is attending one as well.  Around 6 in the morning when it becomes clear that it is too cold or too icy for the buses to safely traverse our rural back roads, the high school will send out its text announcing they will be closed.  

And there is much rejoicing.  

The college campuses rarely close, even when all the other schools in all the local counties are out.  No administration wants to be responsible for thousands of bored dorm dwellers, a good many newly on their own, with nothing to do, nothing to lose and no parent to stop 'em.

When the decision is made, wherever it is made, to close one college campus, the rest fall like dominoes, one after the other, beep, beep, beep the texts come in succession.  

And there is more rejoicing.  

Snow days are a rare treat.  A luxury, a downright indulgence. Oh sure, we'll have to pay for it later, when our teaching schedules are off and we have to scramble to cram centuries in to a few less days. But its a SNOW DAY & it isn't our fault.

Last Tuesday and Wednesday I was ready to go to work, to do my job like a trooper, but through no fault of my own that was shelved.   We were all out.  No work, no school, no appointments, no obligations.  All of the chores were done-- either done last weekend, or waiting for the next.   Had I gone to work, which I was prepared to do (like a trooper) I couldn't have done those chores anyway.   There was no need to do them sooner, no pressure to do them, and no guilt about not doing them.  Because I didn't call the snow day, folks far above my pay grade did.  It's not my fault.  

That is the glory of a snow day. It is a free day. 

We troop around the yard taking pictures and throwing snow balls. We bake cookies and drink copious amounts of coffee and cocoa. We watch movies, all of us, even the dogs. We accomplish nothing in particular and enjoy every unproductive minute.

I know we have it easy.  Lots of my blogging friends are getting pummeled this year (I'm looking at you Joann) and in those kind of extreme conditions, snow days can quickly turn into cabin fever.  

I'm sending warm vibes and thaw out thoughts up your way, believe me.

That said, deep down  I'm hoping we might squeeze another surprise snow day out of this Tennessee winter. Maybe it can come in from somewhere other than Canada.  

Fingers crossed.

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