I woke up this morning to the sight of another beautiful snowfall out my window. The view of the the world under a blanket of powder never ceases to take my breath away. I have always loved snow. LOVED it. I was the one of those little kids that heard a weatherman reporting even a mere 5% chance of snow, & then stayed up all night with my nose pressed up against the window in my bedroom, just praying that a few flakes would fall & school would be cancelled the next day so I could go explore in the winter wonderland (a.k.a. my backyard).
Until this morning, I had never put much thought into why I find snow so incredibly beautiful. Why am I still intrigued this much after witnessing 19 years worth of snowfall? While trudging through the snow with a friend this morning, & commenting on the different prints left by different kinds of shoes, I think I realized for the first time that I am fascinated by the way that snow molds to whatever shape you want it to. It’s so interesting to me that when you walk through snow you can look back and see exactly the path you took to get from one place to another, or that you can take something so fragile, that fell from the sky, & use it to build something that is completely unique to you. No one will ever make the same footprints, & no one will build the same snowman. And this led me to ponder another thought…
Snow is proof that you are an individual. It is proof that you were on this earth. Snow allows you to leave your mark on the world (literally), in a spot that no one else has. It allows you to clearly see that you are the only one to have tread where your feet are about to land on this particular day. You are a pioneer. Even on a busy sidewalk, where 100′s of people walk each day, if you are the first to put your footprint on that walk during that particular snowfall, it shows that you were the first one to conquer that path. And I don’t know if you’ve ever thought about this, just as I never really did until today, but it is rare to see snowy footprints far apart from each other in an open space. Almost always, after someone has laid the first pathway with their own steps, the footprints that follow are from people stepping in or near those first prints; in hopes that if the first person to walk that way made it just fine, then they must be able to follow without running into hardship as well. Maybe they’re afraid of getting their socks wet, or slipping on ice, or stepping in some kind of muck, or even getting lost. Whatever the reason, it seems true that most people are more comfortable following the first set of prints, than taking the risk necessary to make their own.
Sure you can see footprints in mud as well, but walking in snow is always a little more adventurous. Snow covers the ground beneath it, making the spot that you are stepping on next a complete mystery. You never know if your next step will lead you to slip a little on ice, or get stuck in the muck, or roll your ankle in a patch of uneven ground. With mud or sand, while you may leave a unique footprint, it is often without risk. You know exactly what the ground you’re trodding on looks like. You can see where there are puddles, or where you might find a rocky patch, & you know how to avoid it. The same cannot be said in snow. You may be walking into a complete unknown, & sometimes you may not even know how deep that unknown it. So in a sense, when walking on snow, you are an innovator. You, the leader for all these prints on the sidewalk behind you, have people literally “following in your footsteps”. It doesn’t matter if you may just be crossing the street, or cutting corners to get to a class or meeting on time…
If there are footprints beside or behind yours, that means someone values the path you chose to take; therefore, you are a leader.
Life is so interesting.
Oh & while we’re on the subject of snow, I just wanted to share that I actually attend school at Narnia :)