Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Extra virgin snow

Snow redux.

Different this time around - a vicious and very fast southerly wind coming straight from Antarctica, blowing half a gale and making the snow land on sharp and scary angles. This time around the weather was grim and purposeful, and there wasn't the festive feel of last time. No snowboarding on the street and very little traffic. Business closed down and stores ran out of bread in the first hail storm on Sunday. There was sleet and hail and thunder and lightning.

i was on my days off from work and stayed home. i read Alain de Botton's The Pleasures and Sorrows of Work. i like de Botton's massively prolix writing style in part because of his preturnaturally convoluted and adjectivally-heavy sentence structures; they involve purely gratuitous grammar (and abundant bracketed phrases), and one sentence often is long enough to take up a whole paragraph, or even half a typed page, and yet his writing remains attractive and frequently even beguiling or informative.

The sullen day, suffering already from low self esteem, gave up on itself at about 3 in the afternoon and surrendered to a long and chilly evening. i cleaned the house a bit and made casserole mostly to use the oven. It was so cold food cooled on plates even before we started on it, and our hands cooled our mugs of tea.

Today was cloudy and there was more snow and sleet. It is crunchy and delicious to walk in the pure snow. There is so little traffic of any sort there are whole expanses of extra virgin snow. Love it.

Last snowfall three weeks ago was fun and adventurous. After it, there was sunshine. Everybody played! Even us. We played a game we invented, called Legolas, named after Tolkien's elf. The idea was to walk on the snow and leave no footprints. Tigger the tiny Elven-dog was best at it. He could walk on the iced up snow and leave nothing at all. Except little yellow piss holes.*

This grim and purposeful snow has knocked around Christchurch's economy and delayed EQ recovery. It is tough in EQ damaged homes. People can't go to work and lose money. This looks like it will go on for days. When the sunshine comes again i suspect we will just be relieved.

Meanwhile, every night i thank God for my house, and i thank my house for being strong and keeping me safe and dry. Unassuming little thing, a meagre kitset job from 1939, weatheroard and with only two bedrooms and no garage, i am becoming genuine fond of it. Once again, so lucky.

i hear that Elven-piss tastes sweet to Men and Dwarves. It is what they give you for wine at Rivendell. Elves are shits really.

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