Happy New Year!
If there is one thing that separates childhood from adulthood, it is the perception of snow. For those of us who have to drive anywhere (and I’m talking west coast here – all you east of the Rockies folks can go plug in your block heaters, smugly sip your double doubles, and keep your opinions to yourselves), snow any deeper than 2cm causes untold grief. When it first falls it has to be shovelled, using muscles that haven’t been exercised since last winter; once it’s shovelled it freezes and gets all lumpy and treacherous; once it begins to melt it gets disgusting and soaks your pant cuffs. And don’t get me started on black ice . . .
For children, however, it’s a whole different matter. Like an artist standing in front of a blank canvas with a palette of freshly mixed paints, a child looking out his or her window at a fresh blanket of snow knows there is an endless array of possibilities just waiting to be explored.
Having said all that, I have to admit that the recent snowfall has brought back some wonderful memories of my childhood in Montreal and Toronto. Driving home from Tsawwassen last week I saw a sight for sore eyes—a dozen folks, young and old, men and women, playing a game of pickup hockey on a flooded, frozen field. My first memory is of walking down the street in Montreal with the snow banks towering over my head; my second memory is standing on the balcony of our apartment building watching people play hockey in the fields. A few years later I learned to skate on the Humber River behind our house.
With that happy thought, I will wish everyone a healthy, happy and peaceful New Year. I look forward to serving the community again in 2009.