The present winter, the one without a January and February, has been an agitating one. We’ve been waiting winter’s arrival since November 13th , the anniversary of the 25-35 inch snowfall the year before; the winter without any thaw in both January and February. The snow kept coming down and piling up around us.
Landscape gardens disppeared, hibernating under the snow until mid March a year ago. I couldn’t walk my grounds all snow season.
I did make a try once, but my little hills and valleys of the terrain of my landscape grounds had been visually made a Siberian plain from property line to property line.
About a year ago as I was trekking slowly al0ng what I was guessing as the garden path along my pond, my left leg pulled my body downward as if in quicksand, pushing through the pristine snow making me sink up to almost to my belly button,. However surprising the descension, it was a slow maneuver, a pleasant, comfortable maneuver. But it left my right leg securely and very firmly still positioned on the high ground where my full body had been only a moment ago.
The snow made me do the splits. Fortunately for me the snow also stopped me from splitting.
The scene made me laugh. I looked ridiculous. The length of the left side of my body was parallel to the snow line but buried a couple feet into the snow. That same body was lying over my left arm making it immoveable, hand and all. My left ear was even with the snowline, its mate on the other side positioned skyward enjoying the warmth of the Sun.
It was a sunny day, and I had been in a sunny mood, after all I had sunk into snow rather than quicksand. It was a first in my life.
It didn’t take long for me to discover I couldn’t move anything. I had become almost completely mummified by the snow. My right leg and right arm seemed glued together. I wasn’t hurting anywhere. My profoundly split legs were safely encased in snow, so there was no pain at all in that area between them. Only my head and right shoulder to its elbow remained above the snowline.
I was quite comfortable….still laughing, and very glad no one had seen my performance. I could still see the house about two hundred yards on the other side of the pond and then realized what I had done.
I had miscalculated the route of the pond path and had fallen into the embankment of snow which had built up drifting over the pond by five or six feet thinking it was Mother Earth’s terra firma.
I felt foolish all of the half hour or more it took me to dig myself out. Only one hand was available, but only barely available. I couldn’t get any leg or body strength because my legs were split and the body was suspended by the snow. I couldn’t get any leverage.
I was held in suspension, both body and mind. The old body gets a bit cold rather quickly wrapped up in snow.
As of today, I think this winter has produced a total of eight inches of snow instead of the six feet and more collected last year. Only about a half inch of it remains and then only where there is shade.
This year’s version of winter has allowed me to ‘work’ in the garden nearly every day pruning a little clean up here and there, mostly on hemlocks, junipers, yews and arborvitaes. Nothing major, just a few hair cuts to clean up the forms. I did get rid of a few Aralia spinosissima ‘trees’ to keep the clump more or less under control.
I like both winters…..Especially today’s winter. The temperatures all winter have been above zero, Fahrenheit. What a gift!