Loving winter

During the many winters I’ve spent in this, once secluded village in the mountains, I’ve learnt to respect “the power of wood“. And I’m not talking about “morning wood” or stuff like this.

When I’ve heard that it’s gonna be “some massive snowfall” during the long weekend we just had, up in the mountains, we decided to pack our shit and leave for the place we’ve got there. Some people are running away from snow, we tend to chase. Even if the kid was having some sort of a running nose and the occasional fever episode, the doctor recommended we take her out and treat her the “fresh air” pill. “Frozen” is still among children favourites so she loves snow.

My father showed me his new weather forecast app in detail for about 15 minutes before leaving. “It’s gonna snow every night until Sunday, when it’s gonna be sunny! In the morning…”.

“Right!” I thought to myself. I don’t trust those free, Android apps he’s using. Generally… but now, after I’ve experienced the exact same pattern that the damn application forecasted, I’m not so sure anymore.

The sure thing is that it practically never stopped dropping something from the sky. During the day it may be that it was rain, mostly… and one might think that rain may “damage” snow and in general that’s true. But it doesn’t really matter if the thickness of the layer of snow can reach even one meter. Hell, on the sides of the path we had to create in order to get out of the snow it surely reached 1.50-1.70 meters high.

For 3 days straight we couldn’t see the mountain. The one in the first picture (that I’ve used sooner in the story in order to catch attention) that is taken right from the porch of our house. We usually see it “loud and clear” but the constant clouds were so low that we couldn’t even see the shape of it. And to all the lack of visibility, the thick layer of rain/snow and in between, made it an impossible task.

Winter, snow and a small yard of your own feels a lot like a Nazi personal trainer. I think I didn’t sweat so much since I was going biking through forests and tens of kilometers runs. And it’s all thank to the snow and the need to get out of the house, of the yard and eventually move the car that you’ve parked in front. Because we haven’t been there for weeks, the older snow turned into a hard layer of ice and on top of it, the fresh snow was settling like in its mother crib. And even though the first layer was supporting our weight and we could walk on top of it, the new layers (that were like 20 to 30 cm of snow over night) were fluffy and you just couldn’t handle yourself properly through it. So every morning we cut through it. Thank God I don’t own some thousands of square feet so until you reach the front gate with the shoveling it’s already night and you realize you should go back to bed.

In the village, the majority of properties (which are vacation only), were looking like they aren’t going to see any living soul coming to visit anytime soon. It’s probably for the best because it would take ages for the owners to cut a path only from the street to the main gate.

We were lucky that the electricity wasn’t cut off. It usually is during this kind of snow falls. The main line supporting the village and crossing the mountains to Transylvania, is right in the way of the wind, when it’s coming down hard from the mountain. Together with lots of snow, that is a deadly combination for the wires, the electricity poles and their very close neighbors… the trees.

My routine of taking wood from the stack and inserting it in the central heating unit of the house would be a futile job in this case. Without electricity to move the water pumps we would be stuck with only the fireplace. I guess that’s why many of the old people decided to keep their room fireplaces when the “modernization” with “central heaters” came over them. Burning wood is a sure way to heat yourself and if you lack the place in your home to do that, then you are at the mercy of the distributors: of gas, of electricity or whatever.

The village is very quiet. With the exception of the traffic on the main road, taking in all the truck traffic in the area, there is no other “attraction” to stir it up. You could say that at times I’d want a ski slope, no matter how small, only to stretch my legs a little bit. But then, I’d trade the quiet for the crowds. I don’t really know if that’s a trade I’d make.

In lack of something else, I sometimes take my board and climb on the hill behind the house and try to have a pow pow downhill. That’s what I’ve tried one of these mornings as well and I think I’ve sweat something like 5 kilograms. The snow was waist deep and after a hard climb up to the tree line I discovered that the snow was unusable in that form. No matter what I’d do, the board would always sink in. It followed a hard descent, by foot, in which I’ve cursed all that there was to curse.

Oh, but the scenery was beautiful so I could say that I’ve sweat in a nice environment eh?

I never like leaving. It always means to me that a new work week is incoming and problems are impossible to be postponed. The simple tasks of feeding the fire and the baby are turning into troublesome run for the money.

Another cycle is closing. Another winter is coming to an end…

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *