Snow, Ice — and magic

Anne here, just back from a writers’ retreat, nursing a cold picked up on the plane, and thinking about my fellow wenches and friends who are battling with snow and ice and bitter cold. It made me reflect on some of my own few experiences of snow, and how they opened up another world for me.

Coming from a mediterranean type of climate, I don’t have a lot of experience with serious cold — it almost never snows in my part of the world —  but when I was a little girl we lived inland, and on some winter nights the temperature dropped right down below freezing point. Killer frosts.  Eisblumen_4

I grew up knowing Jack Frost was real, because after those bitter nights I’d see the magical ice paintings he’d leave etched on the windows. I’d stare into the swirls and ripples of ice and “see” all kinds of strange and wondrous images. To me, they were a little like Arthur Rackham paintings —the more you looked, the more you’d see.

I’d also play with the frost. On chilly nights, I made little “frozen gardens” by putting a saucer of water on the back step, filling it with flowers and little snippets of greenery and leave it to freeze overnight. Then in the morning, I’d bring it inside and put the saucer with its little frozen arrangement on the breakfast table. 

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