They kept changing their minds about whether or not we would get snow here in Cemaes Bay. They gradually downgraded us from “lots” to “maybe a little”, so when I woke up on Friday morning to see white stuff drifting down, I never imagined it was going to stay around. It was obviously melting as soon as it hit the ground, and I said as much to various people who rang or emailed to ask how much snow we had. At around half past one, sitting down to lunch, I was forced to acknowldege that we had a light frosting.
But you could still see the grass showing through, the clear shapes of all the plants. I still didn’t expect it to stick around. But it really is quite amazing how that gentle, steady drifting downwards of a sparse speckling of snow can transfrom a landscape in a brief period of time. Two hours later, the front garden looked like this:
So I was wrong. It was sticking around. And it was still snowing. Since we fully expected it to have all gone again by the next day, we decided to amble down to the beach and have a look, never having seen snow on a beach before.
It was strange, seeing the sand buried under a blanket of white. Ethereal, with the sound of the waves slightly muffled, disturbed only by the sound of some kids sledging down a slope on the other side of the bay. Not sure how often this would happen – the snow, not the sledging – we decided to walk on to the harbour.
I was sad to see the flags flying at half mast – they only do that when someone in the three parishes surrounding Cemaes dies, the flags only returning to the top when the funeral is over. I hope whoever it was had had a good life, and didn’t die cold or alone.
We were the first people to walk through the snow on the harbour wall, and something tells me the lobster boats won’t be going out any time soon.
It was all so quiet, cold, magically transformed.
Much later that night, after sitting in front of a roaring fire and feeling grateful that we hadn’t had to go anywhere, when locking up the conservatory, I noticed that the snow had settled on the garden furniture so deeply that it looked like cushions. There wasn’t enough light to capture it on camera, and I fully expected to find that it had all disappeared over night, but I was wrong. Again.
I woke to almost-sun, no falling snow, but still a thick covering of the white stuff. Looking out of the bedroom window, I couldn’t help but think that somehow the cliffs on the opposite side of the bay looked taller, more rugged, when covered in snow. And sure enough, the garden furniture was still covered in chilly cushions of the stuff.
More snow had obviously fallen in the night, as the table showed we now had a full six inches – 15.5cm. I wonder if the rocket and Mibuna will still be edible, as and when they emerge from their cacoon. Out the front, the thick layer of snow disguises all the contours, completely hiding some plants, and in the middle of it all, the witch hazel still shines out.
It’s snowing again now, if very lightly, although the snow on the shed roof is visibly melting and slipping down the incline to pile up on the path beneath. I’m glad I was wrong, that we did get snow, and that it stayed around to make everything magical, but I am even more grateful that I wasn’t one of those stuck in a car for hours awaiting rescue, or waiting, anxiously, for a loved one to arrive safe and sound at home.