Tuesday, January 15, 2008

A Proper Canadian Winter



It is a “Proper Canadian Winter”. What else can I call it when all the chilly rituals of legitimacy are being so strictly adhered to? With snow and frost hand-in-hand strutting about bullying, inspecting, and practicing ultimate control like a dictatorial brigade. Demanding uniformity and consolidation of January muster.

Let there be no doubt about it. This year an arrogant winter has taken charge that demands homage and respect. There is no ultimatum. Those few Dissenters, the silent and still inhabitants of woodland or field, brave enough and egotistic enough to flaunt part of their exterior are redressed with snow, veiled in frost, and re-dressed and re-veiled until they fuse into a world of plump look-a-likes.

Winter has taken charge of the ground. January has taken charge of the sky. The sun, usually so bright and cheery, is obliged to ‘disguise and withdraw’. For security of a proper winter it must hide its warmth, reduce its fire, and retreat from the fray.

And so, it remains close to the horizon partially eclipsed by an opaque curtain of winter haze. Not even daring to risk insubordination to the war measures of winter by flashing fires of defense at the impudent and mocking sun dogs encircling it. Looking more like a big ol’ moon than the sun.

Sure every year we have another winter, but for a Proper Canadian Winter, assimilation and allegiance is all. Every contingent and complement of the landscape must wear the trooper colors of white on white. Stability and peace only come when positive spaces are embossed with snow and negative spaces air-brushed with frost.

For too long, all those unsettled, improper winters have dogged us. Winters of confusion and instability that ravage fields and shamble landscapes. With intermittent mixes of snow, rain, sleet, and belligerent Chinooks that propagate ugly patches of mud and rudely interrupt the sleep of plants and warm-blooded beasts in hibernation.

So isn’t it sweet to see winter done up good and proper for a change without the usual slovenly bungling?

A Proper Canadian Winter gets my vote. I hope I haven’t spoken too soon.

10 comments:

Matty said...

Roberta,
I bet you could make homelessness sound like an adventure. You surely have a way with words.
Yes....this is a lovely winter..as far as winter goes. I, for one, would like to sleep and wake up on a beautiful fresh spring day!
Our winters do demand proper respect & homage to the Snow Queen...and a sense of humour.

Pauline said...

Oh this was grand - I love a proper winter, too

Roberta S said...

Hi matty. Thanks for the comment. Warms my heart on a chilly day.

I'm not sure I could write a story on Homelessness and make it an adventure. I'm so silly that sometimes, when I write even fiction, I write and weep and that kind of story would probably be a 'weeper'.

Roberta S said...

Glad to hear you enjoyed my observations, pauline. I do think this year has been an incredibly beautiful winter. Of course I've choose to ignore the reality of fingers and toes numb with cold. I'm only talking about the abiance of the decor.

Yeh, it's a proper winter alright. For dog walks for many years we have had a 2-pant winter. I've been cozy warm with 2 pair of trousers. But this year besides being a 'proper winter', it is what I refer to as a 3-pant winter. That's what I'm wearing for outings this year - three pair of pants.

Joy Des Jardins said...

I love your Proper Canadian Winter...I feel like I'm there when I read your words....all so beautiful. Now I'm wondering what a Proper American Winter is....I don't think there's ever been such an animal....Thanks Roberta....

Nora Christie said...

As Matty says, you have a way with words. Really do. Brrr, though. I'm ready for Spring.

Roberta S said...

Thanks for that comment, joy. Yes, a Proper American winter would be interesting but a Proper Australian winter (or even summer) would be even more titillating, would it not?

Roberta S said...

nora, thanks for the visit. I am of the mutual opinion that you have a way with words as well. You certainly draw me into your stories with details (that others would overlook) that are fascinating and relevant.

Dick said...

Ou sont les neiges d'antan? Dammit, I covet your Canadian snow, Roberta. WhenIwasakid (sorry - it's almost a compound word these days) I'd wake up in January to all-encompassing snow. Now we're lucky if we get the lightest dusting. Enjoy it while you can!

Roberta S said...

Actually dick, that's one of the reasons I wrote this little blurb. To remind myself Canadian winters are very special and unique in some way.

Thanks for visiting and taking the time to comment. Can't respond to your original question -- French is so bad all I can figure is something about 'snow' but the rest is Greek, I mean French to me. I was forced to take French in two years in high school rather than the customary 3 years. As a result I just memorized enough to pass my finals and that was the end of that.