I have been thinking this week about how this time of year, it seems like winter is dragging on. Everywhere I turn, from my Facebook News Feed, to my family, to the young lady at the RaceTrac counter, people are talking about longing for warmer days.
I find my energy level lagging. And so. . . in keeping with said lag of energy, I am taking the easy way out for my weekly blog post and posting a few excerpts from my book, in which the characters, especially Jessie, feel affected by the mood of winter. I’m trying not to beat up on myself for taking this easy route; the book is called Winter Wish , so hopefully these passages have something to say about this time of year:
‘ I opened the car door. “Are you as tired of winter as I am?” I motioned to the bare trees across the street, a few limp, brown leaves still clinging to their branches. Then I looked upward at the no-color sky with its thin light. It was like winter was already tired even though it was only January.
“It’s definitely a blah time of year,” Tenicia agreed, climbing into the car.
“It’s like nothing is happening. Nothing at all.”
“Now, Jessie,” teased Tenicia. “Don’t you remember Mr. Richards’s class? How we studied about how there is actually a lot going on in winter, under the ground?”
“Who cares about under the ground?” ‘ (end of excerpt)
Words of wisdom from Tenicia! So maybe there is something going on here? Maybe we need this time of year, just as the plants and animals do? Hmmm. . . nevertheless, I think most of us sometimes feel like Jessie does in this excerpt:
‘ I was somehow grateful that the day seemed to match my mood—the sky was gray, the dark green of the pines and hemlocks shadowy, and the bare trees beside the road were soft shades of taupe and smoky gray. The winter view, unblocked by foliage, where the road curved near a steep downward slope, was stark and dramatic, layers and layers of slate-colored peaks and ridges fading into the distance.
To my left, as the road straightened back out, a brown patch of earth lay untended and untilled. A wheelbarrow was turned over on its side, as if someone had left it there last fall.’ (End of excerpt-just in case the quotes don’t show up all that well, these italics seem to show up pretty well. . .)
And the last excerpt is from the chapter called, appropriately enough, “Still Winter”:
‘ The days stretched out, long and unchanging, and the season was, relentlessly, still winter. The weather, in general, reminded me of how snow on the ground, beautiful and pristine at first, becomes sludgy and muddy after a while, and you can’t wait for it to melt.
I loved the beginning of winter in the mountains, the crystal nights, the fires in fireplaces, the occasional magical snowfalls blanketing the earth. But that part of winter was over. The last days of winter always seemed the hardest to get through, the season old and worn.
As February faded into March, I asked myself if the days were slightly warmer. I told myself they were, surely they were, and I forced myself to go for a short run a couple of times. I could see faint buds swelling the trees, and a few stray daffodils poked through the ground, ready to bloom if a sudden freeze didn’t kill the buds.’ (End of excerpt)