Tuesday, November 09, 2004


First snow today. Actually it was yesterday that I saw snow for the first time this season, just as I was about to walk into work. The snow was very small and very sparse, and I wasn't able to catch any on my coat to see what kind of flakes were falling. But from what I could see as they fell, I think they were either rods or barrels.

And then I experienced snow for a second time yesterday. It was about 9:00 at night, and I decided to poke my head outside to see if there might be another auroral display (there had been a big one Sunday night, but I missed it.) The Auroral Activity diagram suggested a high level of activity possibly brushing down to Pennsylvania. I looked outside and saw weird stuff in the sky. The sky seemed to be a mottled orange with patches of wispy blackness. I know that during an auroral display clouds will show up dark against the glowing sky, but I couldn't see any stars, which I would have expected with an aurora. The sky seemed to be curdling, and it had an odd effect on my eyes: I felt like each eye was seeing a different picture, and my brain was trying unsuccessfully to integrate them. After a few minutes of this I started to feel the first snowflakes hitting my face. I think what I was seeing was actually the glow of downtown Nanticoke's orange sodium vapor streetlights reflecting off thousands of snowflakes suspended above my head and falling from a considerable height. But then what were the black wispy things? Patches of snowflake absence? In any event, the snow only lasted a few minutes, and didn't amount to anything.

But this morning was the first snowfall that I actually traveled through this season. Haley and I got to experience a passing snow shower this morning on the other side of town as we walked along in the 30 degree air (30 degrees Fahrenheit; that's something like -1 degree Celsius.)

Now the race to the real start of Winter: the first sighting of an SUV on its roof. It sounds like some roads have turned icy, so today I may get my chance.

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