June 26 • 02:55 PM

Fireside chats...only in the winter

December 31, 2008
I like puzzles so this is getting fun. What's even better is if I never put all the pieces together I still walk away enriched, a winner even.

A couple of weeks back I share an anonymous letter I receive with a HEART-felt message. The writer came up with the most beautiful keys to remembering what the heart is all about—Honor others, Empathize with those in need, Accept the differences that make us human beings, Respect others and by all means have the Tenacity to hold to your convictions.

A week before that I try a little reverse psychology on myself and extol the (choke-choke, cough-cough) virtues of winter.

Well, today the worlds blend in a most delightful way. Like a little holiday gift I'm reminded that people are what make this "the most wonderful time of the year." And for this writer, that time of year probably runs 24/7, 365 days. Laughter, after all, is yet another key...

So here's this week's installment, with a couple of lines from the cover letter...

"I hope you don't mind my desire to remain anonymous. I'm a normal person that simply requires no acknowledgement or recognition.

...should you wish to use the attached, please do so."

Once again, it is signed "Your Friend."

Here it is:

Winter, Oh How I Love Winter

I sit in front of a warm fireplace; the gentle rhythm of the family clock in the background; soothing warm slippers in place and yes a loving spouse prepares a little hot cocoa to chase my chills away...Winter, oh how I love Winter.

The view from my window is serene,crystal-like jewels adorn the trees and a pure white blanket of snow covers the sleeping earth. Oh how beautiful the silence of a calm Winter's night...Winter, oh how I love Winter.

"Honey... Hon...Nee!" What? Who dares interrupt my Winter bliss...a piercing voice (convincingly threatening bodily harm) returns me to reality. As I open my eyes the blissful rhythm of the family clock comes to a screeching halt.

"You tracked snow and mud all through the kitchen. Why didn't you hang up your wet clothes? Did you finish shoveling the drive? The left the dog outside." ...Winter, oh how I love Winter.

Drive? Oh yes, the drive. Yes. I shoveled the drive.

"Before or after the plow?"

Plow, oh no...the snowplow. I glance through the window and much to my dismay I view a newly formed "wall" defiantly beckoning my return...Winter, oh how I love Winter.

Wall removed, floor clean, clothes away and dog secure I crawl into bed. My spouse already under the covers exclaims "another eight inches tonight, set the alarm early."

As I exhale in frustration, I hear my spouse ask quietly and lovingly "honey, would you make me some hot cocoa?"...

...Spring, oh how I love Spring!

So now I'm inspired. My friend prompts me to think about my own similar wintertime situation...

I sit in front of a blanked out tv, the faint hum of the blue screen a mirror image of my mind. Wind has kicked out the satellite dish again; woolen Army/Navy surplus socks pulled up over the leggings; little cup of Chianti to chase the chills away...

'Time to shovel out again' says the little voice in my head.

What? And put down this glass of wine?

'If you don't do it, it won't get done. Then after that you'll have to hang your sodden clothes out to dry, wipe up the mess from the kitchen floor and this time wouldya grab the cat before she darts out the door and under the deck?'

Cat? Under the deck? Oh yes. Cat. Deck. Under it. She got out an hour ago. Right before I started pouring the Chianti...

...Chianti, oh how I love Chianti.

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Castle Creek
Napco Pipe
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