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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Snow Day

Yesterday's robins turned out to be right. Today is a "snow day"!! Yippee!! In my part of the world a snow day means school is canceled because of weather. It's a cause for unexpected celebration. It always has been and I think always will be- at least in my heart. It's probably the possibility of a snow day that gives me the gleeful anticipation feeling of a pending storm.

I've lived in other places in the country where people didn't even know what "snow days" were. I found that very sad. I think you really miss out on something if you don't know the feeling of waking up at the usual time in the morning only to realize you can go right back under the covers and sleep a little longer. Maritime kids  often go to bed at night asking for the "percentage" of chance their parents will guess for a snow day. If weather is predicted, or it's windy and snowing out there, a chance exists you won't have to go to school in the morning. It's the chance aspect that is the most delicious.

I don't think it's that Maritime kids hate school really. And even when you're past school age, and past having school age kids around, many people still look forward to "snow days".  It's just part of the culture I think and something we all look forward to.

The thing about a "snow day" is that you get a break from your routine.  You get to spend your time in an unanticipated, often unstructured, sort of way.  You get to sleep in, stay in your pajamas a little longer- maybe even the whole day.  It feels like a sweet treat when you get to do something special.  It might be reading a book that isn't school work, or making cookies, or a snowman, or watching T.V. or "all of the above".  It's just fun to have all that free time ahead of you without anyone telling you what to do.

A snow day is totally different than a weekend.  See, weekends get structured.  There's a list of things that wait all week for you to do on Saturday and Sunday.  It used to be chores. I think now, for most kids, it more about sport practice, but it's still structured. And even if you like doing it, it starts to feel a bit like something you have you do and that gets kind of heavy sometimes.

Maybe a snow day appeals to the Water Violet in all of us.  Water Violet types love to be "hunkered down", in the cave, safe and sound, with a good book, a solitary activity and no distractions from other people. They enjoy being alone. Some people like that feeling more than others, but everyone has a bit of all the emotions in them.  A snow day brings out our Water Violet tendencies.

Even Rock Water types like snow days.  Rock Water types are often pretty inflexible. They stick to routines and regiment. Maybe it's because of that that inflexible nature that they actually like snow days.  Snow days somehow force us out of the routine and there's nothing that can be done about that! Maybe we like that push that forces us to relax, let go, and just be. Hmm...

Not everyone gets to take the day off on a snow day.  People still have to go to work and for some parents it's quite a juggle I'm sure to cover off child care and still get to work and get it all to work out.  But  around here at least, I don't think there's a lot of angst about it all.  Everyone expects to have a snow day or two or three or four or more during the winter months. Because the kids are home from school a lot of people "have" to work from home. Employers seem pretty understanding that it might take you longer to get in to work, or you might have to stay home.  A lot of office buildings shut down as well.  It seems people are starting to catch on.

I saw a lot of really happy kids today.  We didn't really get that much of a storm so people were "out and about".  I saw kids with their parents.  A few of them were in the mall.  Some of them were at the coffee shop. Some of them were tagging along at work.  I didn't see anyone looking anxious about that. It was as though everyone was enjoying a break the routine and just "going with the flow".  Everyone was smiling. Hmm...

I could probably write a whole lot more about snow days, but it's a snow day so I'm going to quit working! It's time to pour a hot chocolate, curl up with a good book, and enjoy the chance to be free of all constraints.


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