Wind had swept snow onto the porch. I grabbed the broom and cleared it so that it wouldn’t stick on the boards under my feet. The snow was light and pure like it always is when the temperature descends well below freezing. This was the kind of snow that would make a screeching sound under wooden shoe soles and sparkle in sunshine. But today the sun was nowhere to be seen. The scenery was unitone. It was difficult to say where a path ended and a roadside began, where land changed into sky, because it was all the same color.
Wind and snow bit my cheeks. The porch quickly filled with more snow but I wasn’t going to clear it anymore. I couldn’t wait to get inside to make a fire in the fireplace. Quickly I cleared the snow from the pile of firewood on the porch and brought some thin logs inside. The house was silent, only the clock on the wall ticked in a determined rhythm. It was nice and warm inside. I could feel the cold radiating from the logs. I should’ve brought them inside the day before. It would take me a long time to get the fire started.
I organized the logs into the fireplace the way I always do so that they would catch fire the easiest, in the way my grandpa taught me when I was a little girl. And sure enough I needed a whole bunch of wood chips before the fire grew big enough to manage on its own. Warm glow filled the room and I curled up on the sofa under my favorite blanket. It didn’t take long before I was fast asleep.
When I woke up, the fire was still crackling. My son had come home and added logs into the fire. He smiled when he saw my sleepy confusion and told me that he was just about to go to a friend’s house. I nodded and he left. The clock on the wall ticked, the fire in the fireplace hummed, and slowly sleep evaded me.