Shelter From The Storm
Published on February 17, 2015
Twenty minutes ago I was sitting on the counter in the bathroom upstairs talking with and listening to a great Cinderella story from my 5-year-old daughter Faith who was in the tub and we were talking about the movie frozen. Directly over the bath is a large skylight. Looking up in anticipation she said, “When will it be winter daddy? "Can we build a snowman tomorrow daddy?" she asked. "Soon honey. Maybe soon”. Here it comes, I thought. Winter is on its way.
In the coming months all greenery save the evergreens, will give way to a coating of snow and ice. The crunch of a frozen earth will sound beneath boots and shoes. Shovels are at their ready. Boxes of gloves and hats have come to the front of the closet and the great pastime of complaining about the weather plods on. Oh, how hard we have it, we Canadians. Salt will stain our shoes. Heating bills will rise. Shoveling will replace lawn cutting and we will be herded indoors to pine over and lament the loss of summer.
Here is what we rarely hear. How warm our homes are. How clear our roads almost always are. How fortunate we are that our cars have heaters and windshield wipers and snow tires. How lucky are we to have freezers to store extra food to save trips in the cold. Or the crackle of a fireplace, giving a window into the magic for a short while and be mesmerized by the mystery of energy itself.
It's on days like these that I remember as a kid that it was not like this. Not that I am so old, but that we were so poor. We lived in half of a rented farmhouse that had no form of heat other than a pot bellied stove in the kitchen. On cold winter nights my mother put all four of us in one bed with a stack of blankets and bricks, heated in the fire, wrapped in towels. On most mornings it had gotten so cold overnight that ice had formed on the walls of the hallway leading to the stairs. I expect it didn't take us long to get dressed.
Even as we get set to endure another season of a deep freeze, here is what we have. More than any generation that has ever come before us in the history of mankind. The protection, the comfort, the food supply, the luxuries of central heat and running water, cable TV and the internet provides for most all and more of what Maslow set out as the foundation of his hierarchy of needs. Given then, that we have so much; focusing on getting the rest should be a breeze. We all have shelter from the storm. Have an excellent day.