Saturday, December 08, 2007

Let it snow

A little fell last night and now it's snowing again, soft bits of down and sugar sifting out of the sky and covering everything. It's about time. I've waited for this for a couple of months and I'm glad it finally arrived. I'm definitely a swan when it comes to the cold.

For the first time in two years I'm getting comments about the newsletter. There were two corrections -- I can always count on those coming in first -- and more positive comments about the latest issue. It's a big one at 42 pages, but that's only available through E-mail and as a download on the web. The print version is a much smaller (only 12 pages and two are throw aways) issue. One ham wrote to thank me for cleaning up his grammar and making the article flow. It's what I do. I clean up everyone's articles, even the president's monthly column. These are hams (engineers mostly) and not writers so their command of written English is not up to par -- at least not on my course -- which is why the newsletter has won national awards and recognition over the past two years. Nice to know someone is reading it outside the city and the local ham club group. From what I've been told, there are more people downloading the newsletter than ever before, probably to see what I'm up to each month. I stayed in the background until recently and have written more articles and profiles and have begun writing a monthly column to let readers of the print edition know about the changes and differences between print and online versions, and also to make some much needed points about volunteerism, responsibility and recognition. One comment mentioned my inciteful and insightful editorial, writing that what I wrote needed to be said and couldn't have been said better. Nice to know someone was paying attention.

This month will be a month of birthdays and deaths once again. Beanie's oldest boy turned 21 on the 2nd, the same day my granddaughter, Savannah, turned six. The 21st is Beanie's youngest boy's birthday and he will be 17 and already more than a handful. will celebrate her birthday on the 17th and I don't want to forget her or a one-time friend who moves deeper into 40-something territory. Any birthday, even a frenemy's birthday, should be celebrated and remembered, especially in the wake of the alternative.

My brother-in-law, Tommy Baker, just 68 years old, died yesterday and I got the new by email. I haven't seen him in years and probably the last time was at a funeral, which seems to be the only time our families get together any more. Tommy's death leaves his brother Jerry the only one of their family still around. Tommy was the good one, the smart one, and Jerry was, well, Jerry. Tommy will be missed and it's sad to know so many of my family are falling prey to time and tide this year.

As the snow sifts silently down and covers everything in a hushed white blanket of cold, it is a reminder that at another time and in another place it would be life giving rain nourishing crops and providing drink. The water is locked in delicate crystals but will eventually change beneath the sun's warmth and become water once again, swelling rivers and creeks in a rushing white wake that will take it back to nourish field, flock and folks where it will be recycled over and over again as rain and eventually as snow, ever changing and ever living, a prism to reflect the light in colored arcs or white field struck with gem bright sparks.

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