This past Wednesday, February 2nd, Wisconsin was hit by a blizzard. It really began to move into the area on Tuesday, February 1st. During the evening, I even witnessed thunder snow – when there is thunder and lightning during a snow storm! it was very powerful, and intense. We went to bed and woke up Wednesday morning to find our entire neighborhood covered by several inches of snow, and drifts several feet high. It was clear that no one was going to be going anywhere for quite some time!
Our phone rang. It was our neighbor, Rich. He had called another neighbor and we decided that we’d all team up and work on snow removal together. As we began our work, others began to come outside and assess the results of the snow and engage in their own clearing. Several people were working together, and there was visiting, laughter and a true willingness to help. After our properties were cleared, Gina went in from shoveling and cooked breakfast for all of us. Then, we ended up helping some more folks with their driveways and walks.
I remain struck by the community spirit that was part of that morning and early afternoon – people coming together, visiting, and helping one another. You could say it was a blessing or a gift of the blizzard.
The other thing I have been thinking about is this: most everything was canceled for a day – and it was good. How good it can be to just stop once in awhile. I thought about how much we can get caught up in the busy-ness of our lives. Maybe another blessing or gift of a storm like this is that it forces us all to stop for a moment.
Now, I am aware that the blizzard created hard work for many, was dangerous, and that others did not have the positive experiences I did. That being expressed, I am grateful for this snow day, for the coming together of neighbors, the sharing of hard work and a meal, and for some unavoidable down time. Perhaps these blessings and lessons learned transcend snow days – maybe they have something to say about how we live our lives and what really matters.