I miss what snow days used to mean


My phone explodes with the inevitable and deeply needed “SNOW DAY!” texts. Letting loose a content sigh, relief puts a comforting hand on my shoulder. Snuggling deeper into my covers, my weary eyes flutter shut and remain so for several more hours.

Outside my cocoon of warmth and the walls of my home, snow swirls through the dry, chilly air. Snow hugs the ground and drapes the trees. Ice clings to roads and turns them into deserted stretches of stress-inducing, crash-causing concrete.

Years ago, this would have been a wonderland. Rather than being bombarded by the good news texts and tweets, I would have flown down the stairs and landed on the couch, television remote in hand. Flipping to channel 13, little me would have squinted anxiously at the screen for the school closure notice. Once those glorious words scrolled across the bottom of the screen, the day of freedom would begin.

Growing up has changed what snow days mean to me”

Starting with breakfast, I would eat a steaming bowl of oatmeal made by either my mom or dad before they went to work. If I was lucky, my mom would have made her special, extra delicious slow-cook oatmeal. In about seven minutes, I would be sprinting upstairs to bundle up for the day.

Soon, I would emerge from my bedroom clad in two layers of clothing and inform my babysitter that I was going to go play outside. Snowpants and boots would be pulled on, fingers would be gloved, and ears would be hastily covered by hats. For hours, that would be the last my babysitter saw of me.

All down the block, kids would emerge dressed likewise. Congregating at the cul-de-sac, the fort building process began. We would use the towering piles from the snow plow as the main part of the fort and dig our own network of tunnels through them. All day, we would work and play in our fort, which surely was all of our pride and joy.

Too soon, we’d be called inside, cheeks wind-kissed and toes iced-over. Walking inside and stripping off the sodden clothes, the warmth of the house would burn and tingle. I loved to sit by the fire while my hair unfroze, and I regained feeling in my fingers. A scalding cup of hot chocolate would find its way into my hands if I was fortunate.

Unfortunately, snow days no longer mean a day of frosty fun. After immediately going back to sleep and waking up close to noon, I lay in bed staring at my backpack in the corner of my room. There’s so much I could do, and I have been given an extra day to do it. Begrudgingly, I trudge across my room for another day of obligatory work.

Growing up has changed what snow days mean to me. I don’t hang out with my friends or go outside anymore on snow days. It’s too dangerous to drive anywhere, and I’ve come to dislike the snow. Instead, I spend my day typing away on my computer or scribbling away on a piece of paper. Snowdays are a day to play catch up or to get ahead on school work. 

What happened?

I miss what snow days used to mean.