frozen in time

We had an ice storm this weekend. 

I don’t know if Ottawa is any more known for ice storms than other places in Canada. Probably not. All I know is that they happen with enough regularity that you know you’re not going to get through a winter without at least one that coats everything in a ripply layer of crystal. The clatter of each individual freezing raindrop on the roof is bad news even for people who revel in winter; it means even cowboy drivers have to slow down. 

What’s left of Miss Edith was completely encased Sunday morning. From the back door twelve feet away, I could see the thick layer of ice, but the camera battery was dead. And then of course the day warmed up and almost everything melted away. The daylight was gone by the time I had power. So today I tried again, with what was left of the ice: smatterings on the undersides of her leaves, catching the gray morning light. (I still say “gray” and not “grey” because I’m not really Canadian and Anglophile spellings from Americans just seem wrong.) It wasn’t easy. Yesterday the ice seemed to hold everything still, even the wind, and today it’s back in force, dragging down temperatures (-12C/10F) and going straight through my impossibly thick winter coat. I’ll need another layer under my jeans when I go out for groceries today.

On one of my walks this fall, I passed by a retired couple who were preparing their yard for winter. I’ve walked by this woman’s roses so many times; they’re as sumptuous as ones back in Georgia. I asked her what to do with Miss Edith to try to give her at least one more year and maybe a few more flowers. We’ll see how it works. It’s all hope in the dark, I know, but it gives me something to look forward to, and that’s a huge part of getting through winter for me.