This morning we woke up to a beautiful winter wonderland. It was the first real snowfall this winter, the first in our new home. I woke up seemingly before the rest of the world while the freshly settled snow was still crisp, white, and perfect. It was not yet light, but the available light bounced off the whiteness.
The house was silent, all children save one were still sleeping. I was eager to get my wellies on and walk in the snow. A little after 7am, all suited and booted and wrapped up warm we walked out through the front door. It was quiet, silent enough that we could hear our own hearts beating.
We walked a path along the main road, before turning into the small alleyway leading to the school, the village’s heart. The school, recreation ground, community hall and church are all within metres of one another. We continued on past the school and saw the church come into view. It’s steeple climbing tall towards the lightening sky.
We continued weaving a path through the snow-covered headstones. We crept behind the ancient church, enjoying the muffled crunch of the compacting snow under our feet. We both gasped as the valley opened up before us. I turned to my son, and a compacted snowball hit me square in the face, and I looked on to a smiling face.
“Sorry, Mammy, I didn’t mean to hit you in the face,” he said, although his laugh said otherwise. I grinned and grabbed a handful of snow before launching it at him and watched him squirm as he tried to avoid the impact although he was too late, and it caught him directly on his chest.
We laughed together and decided to continue on to the river. Just a short walk past the pub, through the alley and onto the bridge. We saw the swollen river that burst its banks dividing the village into two just a few days ago. The silence was deafening interwoven with the odd chirrup from my boy asking why snow made everything feel unreal.
“I think it’s time we went home now, Mammy, I’m hungry” came his hopeful voice, signalling the end of our walk. As we made our way back up the hill to home discussing what he would like for breakfast, the snow began to fall again.