“You can’t get too much winter in the winter.”
It is bitterly cold outside. The new-fallen snow is deep and more is predicted to come down tomorrow, accompanied by even higher winds than those of yesterday’s storm and bringing with them the bonus of negative double-digit wind-chill temperatures. But it is fitting since tomorrow is the shortest day of the year, the Winter Solstice, that ancient celebration of light that ushers in the winter season.
But today, at least for a little while and perhaps in anticipation of tomorrow’s joyful candle lightings, the dank, overcast skies have given way to small blue spaces through which the low sun’s rays are shining brightly. The icicles hanging from every possible surface are dripping steadily on the southern exposures; from my vantage point here in the dining room I can look across the living room and out the big front window and see their bright drops and hear their soft tattoo as they hit the ledge outside.
It is a very pleasing thing, this quiet, light-filled moment. Though in the backyard the furballs are out in force, making up for yesterday’s lost foraging time and reveling in the warmth of the sunshine high in the leafless treetops. I was out there with them a little while ago, happy to see all of my most-loved cast of characters and taking advantage of the photo ops they provide.
I haven’t forgotten my little holiday project, however, and it was very late Friday night (or very early Saturday morning) when we went out to hunt down one of the sights on my list. It was after midnight when we got there (on purpose, certainly not because of the travelling distance) and I was a bit disappointed that all of the other small lights at this home were not turned on. But it is the tree – The Tree – in front of this house that in small part prompted my project so I fitted Matilda with the smallest (widest angle) lens, mounted her on the old tripod and trudged off to find a suitable vantage point.
The middle of the road here is often the best place to shoot the houses, and you’d think that at midnight there’d be no traffic. Not my luck. I caused a great deal of laughter from our local police when they came cruising by on patrol, clipping along at a speed that made us wonder if they were going to stop or run me over. In reality, they probably just wanted to get close quickly since from a distance and from behind I probably looked in distress as I knelt there in the road, oblivious to all but my goal of capturing the view in front of me.
But fortunately for Bob’s heart it wasn’t from the road that I was able to get the daily shot I wanted: