Monday, November 25, 2013

CBB Promotions Book Blast: Guest Post for Author Heidi Garrett

The Magic of Snow

I’m from Texas, and lived a decade in Southern California, so for most of my life, snow was abstract. Something I saw on television, or in movies. I went on a few ski trips. Of course, there was snow. But the white stuff always seemed distant from my daily reality—a romantic or troublesome notion.

Then we moved to Eastern Washington state a few years ago. Each year, I can’t wait for the first snowfall. You wake up, and the world is transformed. Sometimes the season’s first flakes are small, like salt. Other times it comes down in large misshappen white-gray polka dots. I’ll run to our front window, gazing at the wonder of it all.

If there was a good snow, through the night, the streets and roofs, trees and bushes, will be coated with a magical white blanket. If the snow has just begun—or it’s light—the warmth of the earth will melt it, as soon as it touches the ground. Either way, seeing that first snow, always feels like a hushed, mystical event. 

Because the world turns quiet in the snow. It’s really cold out, so most people stay in. If there’s been a bad storm, no one even tries to drive much. This quiet makes me feel like I’ve been transported to another earth—where the only sense of other life, is an invisible shared heartbeat. 

I’m attuned to the difference of moving around in snow. Years ago, when I lived in Austin, Texas, I got caught in an ice storm. The roads iced over fast, that night. Leaving the party, became dangerous. Everyone, including myself, crashed where we were. The next day, we all hung around, waiting for the ice to melt. It didn’t, but I decided to drive home anyway. Big mistake. Driving on ice is treacherous. After almost slip-sliding into a ditch, I thought I was safe, when I parked my car. However, each rung of the steps, leading to my front door was frozen solid. It was a precarious hike.

Thus, my first year in snow, the thought of driving even short distances filled me with trepidation. However, I’ve since learned there’s an enormous difference between driving on snowy, slushy roads and icy ones. The heat of traffic melts snow, and leaves a slick, but somewhat, safe mess to navigate. Where things get tricky, is when that melted snow freezes later in the day, or early in the morning, covering the streets with that icy layer. Despite the dangers, the visual wonder of the snow never ceases. People become friendlier and more talkative. Perhaps, all of our senses our heightened by the decisive appearance of Mother Nature. As the world shows us a completely different version of herself, we pull out alternate selves as well. 

There is nothing like going to a coffee shop, in the snow. Puddles and slush, mark the trail, from the door to the counter. Everybodies bundled up, and strangely, often cheery. The coffee tastes better than when the days are warmer, and the trip to the shop is less fraught. Caffiene-sensitive, I may never be able to stop drinking coffee completely, as long as I live in a part of the country where it snows.

Walking is also a different experience in the snow. It becomes a thing filled with a crunch-crunch that’s exacerbated by that acoustic layer of soundproofing that comes with the snow. If it’s sunny, the light can be blinding. If it’s not, you’ll experience a new level of being cold. Parkas, gloves, mittens, wool hats and scarves—boots with traction—become something other than fashion items. And, yes, I’ve capsized a few times. Thanks to that patch of ice, lurking beneath the fresh layer of white.

All-in-all, despite the hazardous conditions that it brings with it, I love the snow. My heart pitter-patters when I see a deer or fawn run across the street, leaving the track of its hooves, in the previously unblemished icing on the lawn. Or watching the cats, pick their way through and around drifted mounds. Shoveling snow is a great excuse to get outside. Although, I confess, I might not feel that way, if our driveway was larger, or our sidewalk was longer.

Your cheeks burn, your fingers become numb, and, yet, the magic of snow—and the enchantment it brings to everyday life—is undeniable. 

Heidi Garrett

Heidi Garrett is the author of the contemporary fairytale novella collection, Once Upon a Time Today. In these stand-alone retellings of popular and obscure fairy tales, adult characters navigate the deep woods of the modern landscape to find their Happily Ever Afters. The Original Fairy Tale short stories:The Girl Who Watched For Elves, The Girl Who Dreamed of Red Shoes, and The Girl Who Couldn’t Sing are a prelude to that collection.

She is also the author of The Queen of the Realm of Faerie series, a fairy tale/high fantasy mashup about a young half-faerie, half mortal woman who must save both the Enchanted and Mortal Worlds.
Heidi was born in Texas, and in an attempt to reside in as many cities in that state as she could, made it to Houston, Lubbock, Austin, and El Paso. Heidi now lives in Eastern Washington state with her husband, their two cats, her laptop, and her Kindle.
Being from the South, she often contemplates the magic of snow and hopes to remind readers that:
Once upon a time, you lived in an enchanted world…
Learn more about Heidi and enjoy her stream-of-consciousness reading journal, Eating Magic,
If you want to say Hello, give her a shout out on Twitter:
She is now on Facebook:

1 comment:

  1. Beth, Thank you for having me (again) on Curling Up With a Good Book! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, Heidi