365 Days Of Blogging #25 – Snow Day

I had a lot of days off school as a kid because of the snow. We lived in the countryside, and to get to school, we’d have to drive a long, high stretch of moor road, which, in blizzard conditions, was dangerous to navigate. 

One of the best feelings in the world was waking up to a whiteout and racing downstairs to be told school was cancelled. Sometimes I didn’t even need to leave my bunk bed as Mum would shout up the stairs that school was closed, and a collective cheer would ring out from my siblings and me. I can remember once we had almost an entire week off because the weather was so brutal. This was back in the ’90s when the yearly snowfall was decent. 

On several occasions, we’d make it to school, and then the snow clouds would release their treasure. Every child would be distracted by the snow, constantly glancing toward the windows. When it would begin to get heavy, there’d be a noticeable shift in the energy among us – we’d be buzzing with excitement. Those of us living outside the village knew we’d be going home within an hour or so, before the moor road became impassable and we were snowed in. 

I was snowed in once. I was about eight or nine and at my friend’s farm which was close by to school. According to my mum, I called her and said, breathless with glee, ‘mummy, it’s so romantic!’

Saga had her first snow day today. I was probably more thrilled about it than she was. Snow is the ultimate ‘fuck the establishment’ weather, and when it causes disruption to the school day, I rejoice

The days I had off school as a kid because of snow make up some of my fondest memories from childhood, and I’d like to think that it’ll be the same for Saga too. 

The snow wasn’t anything significant today. The coverage wouldn’t have caused anyone to bat an eyelid in Sweden or Iceland. Life wouldn’t have slowed even for a heartbeat. 

Here though, well, you’d think we were entering a new Ice Age by the level of concern in the weather reporter’s voices. Some years ago, with an ex-partner (Saga’s dad), we drove four hours across Sweden from Borås to Stockholm, then four hours back again in almost constant blizzard conditions, and all the roads were open and flowing nicely. If the same blizzard were to sweep through England, the country would shut down, and the panic would be extraordinary.

By mid-morning, most of the snow had melted. But Saga and I scraped up what we could from the back garden and had a ‘slush ball’ fight. Then we took out her super deluxe sledge, with steering and everything…never anything of the like in my day, and I dragged her over the nearby field. It was more grass and muddy puddles than snow, and, unsurprisingly, we were the only ones out there. 

But it was Saga’s first time on a sledge, and I’d be damned if I wasn’t going to haul her about on every available patch of snow. I’m experiencing a mental tsunami of health anxiety right now, but this snow day with my girl was the joyful distraction I desperately needed. 

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