A Day in the Snow
Many people make quite big journeys to experience time in the snow.And to others snow is not much more than a nostalgic element especially those who live in cold climates where winter brings frequent snowfalls. The beauty of snow is dramatic but loses its charm when there is the battle to keep warm, stay dry and to keep roads and pathways clear and safe.
The Dandenong Ranges is a place where it snows infrequently enough for the beauty of a snowfall to be gasped at, yet often enough for residents to have memories of dangerous roads and an over supply of gaping tourists.
When my first husband and I moved to Mt Dandenong in the summer we had a bushfire in the paddock behind our house a few days before my eldest son was born, Then in winter we had heavy snow. How amazing to look out the window and see a snowman or two on our front lawn. And how disconcerting to have strangers come in and play.
Apart from that first unforgettable experience a day in the snow for me would be several days morphed into one. The children would shriek with excitement at the first large flakes of snow as they drifted down. There would be even more excitement if they stayed on the ground without melting until a white carpet appeared, not very likely in Belgrave. But the once or twice it happened a snowman would be built and snowballs made and thrown as done by children in English story books.
If the snow melted too quickly there would be the urge to drive to the top of the mountain and that meant negotiating roads that were challenging at any time. The tree ferns would be exquisite with their heavy mantles of snow but the winding roads would be slippery and treacherous. Few of us were experienced enough to have chains for our wheels so we took risks that were not foreign to us, living fairly feral lifestyles as many of us did.
We would reach Olinda safely, the children would play in the snow on the golf course, and I would watch nostalgically from the cosy car. Now my grand children live in Olinda and for Django’s second winter there was heavy snow. I was excited by amazing photos such as we would never have been able to take when my children were small. I was sad to be so far away of course, but the overwhelming feeling was one of nostalgia.
. There is another memory, a little stranger. A friend and and I visited a third friend at her lovely house in Poets Lane, Sherbrooke one freezing winter day. There was a beautiful vista of snow from the windows of the cosy lounge room with roaring fire. We were there to try the Christoff experiment in recalling past lives. When it was my turn I lay on the warm carpet and Nina and Yvonne sat at my head and feet respectively. Nina read a guided visualization encouraging me to take the journey back into another lifetime. I went back, certainly, but to a recent time in this life when I lay on a warm beach on the Gold Coast in a sleeveless pink dress! It felt incredibly real as the snow continued to drift down outside the window.