And may the odds be ever in your favor. -Effie Trinket, The Hunger Games
The wind chill is -22F here today. Schools are closed, the kids are home. I’ve kept a pot of lightly-cinnamon-ed water simmering on the stove all day. The moisture feels good in the air, and the aroma is heavenly. We live in a place where the term “Lake Effect” means, at one time or another, a certain part of our city can be clobbered by snow and wind while another section, perhaps only a few miles away, is sunny and fine.
Lake Effect can annoy and maybe even frighten people. Personally, I think it’s the bomb. I say that with the profound understanding that I have the gift of a home, a snowplow service, sufficient food, and a furnace that’s a workhorse.
Once, many years ago during a Lake Effect storm, I felt I needed to get to the office. This was in my post-marriage, but pre-kids, phase and so I started out, insisting in my own mind that the courthouse would be open and the judge would be expecting me. I ended up in a snowbank after my tires lost traction.
Lesson #1: next vehicle was a Jeep. Lesson #2: learned only recently, with the benefit of hindsight and 20 more years of experience, stay home. Use this as a breather. Hang with the pups. Watch The Hunger Games with my girls. Observe and appreciate the fierceness of Mother Nature.
This time around, of course, I’m home anyway, recuperating. And what did I find on my kitchen windowsill first thing this morning?
A blooming hyacinth, gifted by a beloved neighbor. It wasn’t blooming yesterday, I swear. Yet, today, a day of single-digit temps and a sub-zero wind chill, it chose to bloom amidst a storm of howling wind and raging snow.
Whether she knew that hyacinths are one of my all-time favorite flowers, I’m not sure, but I can tell you this: the scent of a hyacinth amidst a Lake Effect storm is nothing short of heaven.
Yes, I’d say the odds are firmly in my favor.