Yesterday it was all snow and ice. So cold it changed the sound of things. The frozen manure rolling on the hard packed earth in the pole barn was pigeons cooing. And the sound of Zinnia crunching on the same was the hoof beats of Amish horses pulling a buggy on the road.
I texted Margaret late the night before… Sledding tomorrow? We both knew there was a good chance the snow wouldn’t last long. There was a only narrow window where we could get together, but we made it happen.
We’ve been doing this for about three years now. It was Margaret’s idea. I hadn’t been sledding in years, but she has grandchildren and when they visit in the winter it’s one of the things they do together.
Margaret is 20 years older than me. And not only do I enjoy her friendship, but I learn from her too.
I went down first on the orange plastic sled to pack the snow down. I easily made a path, slick with soft snow on either side. It’s not a long hill, so climbing back up isn’t daunting, but it’s steep enough to lose control when it’s icy.
Yesterday it was just right.
Margaret has what she calls a “Happy Gene”. Which means she will be happy whenever she has the opportunity, even in the middle of the darkest times she looks for something to laugh about. Mostly when we get together we walk and talk. And we do a lot of laughing.
I’ve decided that I have a “Happy Gene” too. The difference is I’m just learning to cultivate it. I realize I prefer to be happy, to let the muscles around my mouth relax up at the corners instead of down.
I’ve made the decision to grab happiness whenever I have the chance.
Yesterday’s winter blew away with last nights wind and rain. It turned the snow to mud and twisted and tossed my fabric hanging on the clothesline. One old apron got caught on the branches of the maple. I’ll have to use a ladder to get it down.
Now the sheep are in the back pasture and the hens have come out of the roost for the first time in two days. Zip is back to hunting in the marsh and I saw the first Flicker at the bird feeder.