Oh, winter in New Hampshire! I know now why New England has spawned so many writers — what else is there to do on long winter days when it’s below zero outside? After subzero temperatures that yielded to rain and glazed all horizontal surfaces, I stepped out this morning onto our glassy driveway, mincing my way like some old woman, and only because I had somewhere to be. In Illinois, I may have owned three pairs of socks. Now, these miraculous items of clothing must comprise at least 30% of our laundry. Today, I wore tights covered by wool knee-highs, that were themselves covered by warm anklets, all under zip up leather boots. The art of layering is a needed skill as frigid mornings yield to more temperate middays that are only false hope as sundown brings the deep chill back. I used to take the Christmas decorations down by mid January; no more. I can’t bear the thought of cold snow without the warmth of little white lights on the tree and gazebo outside.
With all that said, I don’t want to be anywhere else. I love building fires in the woodstove, soot and all, and the beauty and stillness of the woods under a blanket of white. There is nothing like the slow warming glow of a winter sunrise that serves as a rosy backdrop to the stark silhouette of tree limbs or the incomparable feeling of being nestled under a lofty down comforter. I think winter must be my favorite time of year, that is, until spring comes.