While the kettle was boiling for breakfast I went outside, pyjamas and dressing gown, to put out some food for the birds – rolled barley for what has become an almost domesticated small flock of pigeons; peanuts for the cock and two hen pheasants who have gone beyond domesication and have me trained to provide nourishment on demand – when I noticed a flurry of several snowflakes whizzing by on the cuttingly cold breeze. It was a fleeting moment but undeniable. Without doubt, it had been snow. It didn’t last long enough to reach the ground or, even if it did, there was no hint of that wonderful winterland scene so fondly transferred onto Christmas cards each year.
After breakfast, I saw Facebook reports from friends around the country on what, in an Irish context, were significant falls of snow. There was even enough in one Cork garden to allow the children make a snowman. Gardens in Wicklow and Dublin were under a blanket of snow, perfect winter scenes that demanded one run for the camera to capture what we know from experience is a fleeting scene.
The front garden under threat of snow:
There was no snow here in Waterford, other than that brief flurry of seven snowflakes I encountered while feeding the birds, but I felt it was an occasion which warranted a camera tour of the garden for one never knows when magic might happen.
I walked and hoped and searched the garden for signs of snow:
Now, I am mindful of my friend Anna in Finland who has had to dig her way out of her house for the past several weeks so as to bring her darling dog and cats for a walk and of Bob and Mani in Colorado who haven’t seen the soil of the garden, because of snow cover, for what seems now to be an eternity but for those living in a country where snow is a novelty we wish for the occasional white day, fools that we are!
Yes, we may wish for snow but we really don’t want it. It’s fine to see photograhs from Finland, the USA, even in Cork and Dublin, but, really and truly, I don’t want snow.
There were glimpses of white but no snow: