Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The Sun Of Lapland

The Sun Of Lapland

It was an optimistic sky, wearing robin’s egg blue, that nudged me awake in the morning. A sky unaware of the future, unconcerned with the past, it beckoned me come outside with long fingered rays that reached through my curtains and tickled my bed. Though tempted, I had heard the warnings, seen glimpses of the weatherman wringing his hands as he stood by his map now vivid with the pinks and whites of ice and snow. So I shut my eyes against the tranquil tent above my head, and struck out with a list in my hands, to gather up all the essentials I'd need for a long winter's night in the snow.
To the feed store for bird seed.
To the farmers market for navel oranges and honeycrisp apples.
Fresh green vegetables and armloads of white flowers.
Pots of white hydrangeas with blooms the size of a sheepdog’s head.
To the knit shop for advice on how best to shape the neckline of the caramel coloured sweater I’m currently knitting.
To the bakery for cinnamon bread.
And sure enough, that carefree blue sky was in full retreat and a queer silence was descending as I hurried back home with my staples. With firewood stacked and chicken soup simmering, and Edward asleep on my feet, I sat down to patiently wait.
Did it come?
Oh yes, it came.
Unheard, almost wraithlike, it fell all around us. It fell and it fell and it fell. With the dedication of an athlete and the talent of an artist, this snow plunged down at rates of speed rarely seen in our little corner of the world, painting us inside a landscape worthy of Pissarro. It covered us so quickly it seemed to fairly bubble up from the frozen ground, to bloom like a strange winter flora all over the bare trees.
I ran outside.
As if hidden inside a grey Chinese lantern in a sky hanging close to the Earth, the Moon lit up the garden like the Sun of Lapland. It cast an eerie blue light, bright enough to easily spot a big white furry dog as he scampered amongst the black trees at midnight. Bright enough for the silhouette of a great horned owl to float across the white garden floor like a velvet clad dancer at a winter cotillion.
I stood marble-frozen in the garden at one in the morning, shin deep in this exceptional snow, enveloped in the silence created by this heavy blanket of eiderdown and, much like that blissful blue sky of the morning, I found myself happily unaware of the bother that can arise when one is completely snowed in. I only thought how marvelous it looked, how delightful it felt, and how inviting was the orange glow that shone out at me from the cottage windows.
I thought of the fire now roaring in the fireplace.
The mugs of Horlicks.
The stacks of books.
The knitting, the white flowers, the crisp sheets.
So we scrambled back inside, the big dog and I.... where we now remain, deliciously snowed in! For two days and counting.


  1. Enjoy, if you can, the solitude of a good snow, Pamela. What a lovely picture you paint with your words as you embrace the weather. We had a good snowfall today as well,but it is the winter norm here. Beautiful post.

  2. The snow-shadowed landscape is hauntingly beautiful and so are your words.
    Thanks for a lovely post!

  3. You have taken me to a magical realm!

    Aloha from Waikiki

    Comfort Spiral



  4. It's here now, we are sitting next to the bay window and watching the snow. It's coming steady down, soft, quietly and only the small lantern outside illuminates the rapidly disappearing path!
    The fire place crackles and Oscar sleeps, snoring softly!My husband still out there, coming home late by car. I try not to worry!

    xoxo Victoria

  5. Thanks for the visit.

    Snow can be so lovely but it is the cold, wind, and storms that sometimes accompaniment them that I can do without.

  6. Its on its way here.... so they say. It will arrive quietly in the wee hours as I sleep. I'll awake tucked in with double or more the snow out there now. I love it. Got my provisions, the chicken soup simmering..... but I didn't think of the white flowers, what WAS I thinking?

  7. Hello Pamela

    Gorgeous picture and beautiful words.

    Greenville got about 7 to 8 inches of snow Monday--we do not see that much snow at one time!

    Tracy :)

  8. What a beautiful photograph, being snowed in is wonderful if you are prepared for it with a well-stocked freezer and pantry and can just sit back and enjoy it. Here we are back to grey skies and rain which is much less exciting. I shall be watching for the postman, a package to look forward to - how exciting!

  9. I love that feeling of being enveloped in the quiet whiteness of newly fallen snow. There is nothing better than being safe at home with plenty of provisions when the snow has fallen - your words make it all sound so wonderful:)

  10. Good morning Pamela and Edward,
    First let me thank you for your kind comment on my blog. It snowed here yesterday, not as much as usual just enough for Eloise to have a good romp. White dog, white snow, playing down from the sky as she played and ran on the land. Wonderful sight!

  11. Beautiful description of your snowfall, now can you help me out with describing ICE please!! It came down here as sleet, tapping on the windows, enveloping everything in shining silver under the night lights.

    We stayed home yesterday - I made a big red pot of Jamie Oliver's lentil and spinach soup, and his baked Cauliflower Cheese - lovely warming Brit dishes! (Note my last post when you have a minute Pamela - review of a great historic recipe book).

    Enjoy being 'snowed in' - a Winter pleasure for certain.
    Warm wishes - Mary

  12. Yes two or three days of being snowed in is lovely but then it gets a bit hard going.

  13. Beautiful Pamela, the image and your writing. I have sunshine, still snow and frigid though!!

    Also, I have a Great New Giveaway from Blydesign! Come and enter!

    Art by Karena

  14. an optimistic sky... I just LOVE the image that conjures up. You are such a magician, Pamela.

    Enjoy the time inside!

    Gorgeous post,
    xo Isa

  15. It sounds heavenly Pamela...and the photograph is perfection. Happy days for you...enjoy!

    Jeanne xx

  16. Lovely, evocative painting! Is it one of yours?

    Your words make me think of Laura Ingalls Wilder. We are delighting in our snow too. Well over a foot deep now. Since it’s Maine and we’re used to it, we’ll be plowed out by tomorrow morning, although my kids wouldn’t complain about a second snow day. I’m eager to get out on my skis once it stops blowing. Enjoy!

  17. Oh Pamela,
    What a wonderful attitude to the joys of snowfall. I love it but, here in the UK we don't really have as much as you and, unless you live in the middle of nowhere, one is never really snowed in. Good job that you got all of the supplies and essentials when you did and that you took heed of the weatherman's warnings.
    All of you enjoy your home comforts and keep warm. XXXX

  18. THAT is exactly what I miss about snow days!

    I could sit at your feet by the fire and listen to your stories all day!!!

  19. Beautiful!

    We got a little over 2 feet of snow.

    Today the sun is shining. The birds are back in mass at the feeder.

    But I have yet to see the squirrels walk across the snow toward the feeder.

    It might be too cold! Even Nadine, our cat, stayed outside for only a minute or two!

  20. Pamela, this is so beautifully written, I feel like I was hurrying home with you, one eye on the dark sky, looking forward to snuggling down in front of the fire , feeling safe and loved.
    Love the picture you chose to illustrate as well.
    Have a delicious weekend

  21. It's worth repeating Pamela but I so appreciate how you find the good, and the beauty is all things. I love the snow & reading what you wrote, flooding back came some of the best memories. The moon at night that casts it's bright light across that stark white snow. I truly miss it and look forward to all it's glory again some day, hopefully in Scotland. Thank you, such a joy to read!

  22. Five days and counting and I still have ice at my front door. It's beautiful when it happens, and it kept me busy feeding the birds, but personally, I'm ready for Spring!

  23. The picture is amazing and the words beautiful as ever.


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