When there is snow on the ground, even a cloudy day can feel bright. It is one of the things I love the most about winter. A summer woods is dark, close and deep. A winter woods is full of light. It is a study of long strong shadows, dark and bright, drawn in light.
The past few weeks, we found ourselves near enough to the ocean to be able to take walks on the winter beach. Some of the beaches we walked for the first time. I find it hard to imagine that these long wild stretches have escaped me all these years. There were magical days when the snow covered much of the beach and the ocean foam froze into a whipped cream edge to the sea. Rocks wore crowns of ice.
On another day, we were caught in a snow storm, and watched the snow settle onto the sand and sea birds backs. Last week, we walked by endless snow fences, placed to hold the sand back from its endless journey to somewhere else.
The birds tell me the back of winter has broken. (The relentless howling wind that brought -4F temps this morning did little to reinforce that.) The calendar agrees. We’ve taken to working on the wet, snowy or days too cold to manage. When the sun shines bright, I pack a lunch and we head out for an adventure. Winter will be gone before we know it. You know what comes then?