Dobet Gnahore sings mournfully from the speakers. I sip on a ginger brew, enjoying its bit of bite. Outside, it's snowing lightly, and the high peaks are obscured by clouds. It isn't horribly cold out. That's fine. This winter has been cold enough. Wood, such a precious commodity up here, even and especially this time of year, is in short supply.
That sounds silly, doesn't it? There are forests all around us, and whole swaths that have been laid to waste by pine beetles. Be that as it may, the wood that has been chopped down and seasoned for burning is not as plentiful because of how cold it's been this year. Some cats I'm acquainted with are either running low or are out, and the individual we all usually buy from is supposedly out for the year.
I keep in mind the vernal equinox is but twenty-one days away. It will be spring. For us here at ninety-one hundred eighteen feet, another month or month and a half and things will start to sprout and grow. There will be more green than just the pines. Humming birds will zip through the air, trilling as they go.
Winter is part of the cycle, I know this. And, here in the higher country of the pointylands, winter lasts much longer than at lower elevations. That's part of the price to be paid for living where others like to come and vacation and having the view of great peaks out one's windows.
Still, this year, I am quite through with winter. It's been long, dark, brutal, and cold. It's been a lean time. I lost my mother in the early part of the season, and I am far from pleased about that circumstance.
Stories, perpetuating the social construct of reality, speak of spring as the time of renewal and rebirth. New beginnings full of fresh promise. I'm not much for the social construct of reality, but I am a sucker a good story. I guess after a winter like this one, I feel like being suckered, although I find myself hoping it's actually for real and not just a royal scam.