Today was a snow day (ie., work cancelled due to weather). These days are gifts when you have been overwhelmed with projects and challenges. They are the kind of gift day a person would pray for. It was the wet sort of heavy snow, where if one were making a snow man one would rejoice, but if one were shoveling, enthusiasm might be significantly tempered. It was, at least, mild, so the work was not uncomfortable (outside the fatigue and muscle required).
In addition to my walkways, it has been my ritual to shovel my deck, as best as I can, so that it need not bear the weight of an entire winter, and the dogs have space to mingle when they go outside. For those keeping track, we now have three dogs, and when they get playful together a shoveled deck keeps the indoors just a bit more peaceful.
Now the puppy, who is typically the instigator of all dog play, loves to drag various treasures around the house… blankets, towels, socks, hats, gloves…. if she finds it, it becomes her new toy. Without fail, she will try to sneak her latest treasure past you on her way out to the deck. Typically she fails, as she is not the slightest bit subtle about hiding whatever it is she is dragging about, but every so often an odd bit of something does make it into the yard.
Today, as I shoveled, I was certain she had done it again. For some time I have not found the dogs’ antler bones. I had purchased several, thinking more bones meant less fighting, but it rarely seemed to work that way. One, in particular, was a favourite – wider and flatter, and for some reason more satisfying on puppy gums. Then one by one the bones sort of disappeared. I was pleased to think that I had finally found one again, and thought what a great way this would be to occupy one of the dogs later. I truly hoped that glimmer of treasure was the wide, flat one.
Without hesitation I plunged my new teal gloves elbow deep in snow, and triumphantly raised my now cold hands to eye level to see which of the antlers I had found. As I uncurled my fingers I was somewhat taken aback to discover that my pretty little gloves had actually been firmly grasped around a frozen bit of dog poop.
I believe there may be a lesson here. Perhaps the lesson is not to shovel your deck until spring. Perhaps it’s that not all buried treasure is worth going after. Or maybe the lesson is that when you ask G*d to make the day just a little shitty so you can stay home, you might want to clarify that you were talking about the weather.