The Star-Herald

Making old snow new again

Middle of February — and the snow looks like it will last forever. A time when the joy and exuberance of 10 inches of fresh powder is replaced with language that would color a priest’s collar. Too cold to go out and too warm to stay in. What should one do?

Snow country makes its own rules about how life should be lived. When snowing, sit inside and wait. When the snowing stops, go out and attempt to remove it. Repeat as needed.

The region is lucky that the full experience of snow can be appreciated. From those first few flakes that fall at the beginning of the season to the abrasive pellets that will flick the skin away in January, one gets the whole range of snow types in a season. Given the proclivity for the weather squawkers to salivate at the first hint of doom, this snow thing can be exasperating.

Snow, that white material that keeps on freezing, is a sure sign that winter is here. The hotels, motels, bed and breakfasts of the County are booked solid as those from away come up to try their hand at surviving cold and wet. The rest of us grin and bear it.

WIth the possibility that we will have a new air carrier soon, the winter wonderland has created lots of wonders. How to get people into the area, remove their excess cash and get them out of the area before they realize that their pockets are empty and they just bought the pants they were wearing?

The bear family at the Nordic Heritage Center has potential. Take a big picture of momma and cubs sitting in a snowbank. Replace momma’s face with a hole and sell the chance to get a bear picture made. “See, Madge, I got my picture with some bear cubs.” Twenty dollars can change hands real fast.

Another idea: kiss a moose. I am certain that the wardens can find a willing moose to stand out at the airport and exchange slurps with the visitors. To keep things orderly some boundaries can be set. No lip locking after 5 p.m. Solicitation while intoxicated will get you an appointment at the Judge Turner Memorial Courthouse. And riding said moose like a cowboy will result in overnight accommodations at the local clink. The imagery in a snowflake knows humor.

WAGM will have to update its doom and gloom public service announcements on the perils of herbal products. These can be replaced with the manic antics of the weather nannies scolding the old-timers who fail to turn on their lights in the middle of blowing snow. And the plow truck drivers can demonstrate the best way to fill a driveway without losing speed.

Yep, the imagination is running wild like a snow snake. Spring cannot get here fast enough.

Orpheus Allison is a photojournalist living in The County who graduated from UMPI and earned a master of liberal arts degree from the University of North Carolina. He began his journalism career at WAGM television later working in many different areas of the US. After 20 years of television he changed careers and taught in China and Korea.

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