well -20C last night-- here we go--winter here we come--
I was thinking back last night to a time just a while ago it seems but in reality a quite a while ago--watching for the horse and sleigh as they plowed through the drifts of snow, now getting packed down as the neighbours also moving about were trying to get supplies that they needed, but probably could do without if a major storm swept through--you know I remember the storms which seemed fierce then, the howling of the wind, these storms were referred to as blizzards--you would actually get tired of listening to the mournful sound, and the shaking of the old house.
I can remember quite well getting up in the pitch blackness and with the parka pulled tightly around start towards the barn. One time in particular after an exceedingly long "blow" the drifts were piled high--I ran right into one in the dark higher than my head--what a time getting through!
Eventually reaching the barn door, you opened it and the heat in there created huge clouds of steam, but what a welcome reliefto close the door--it was like another world--so hot in there, and so cold out side
As your eyes focused all heads were turned in your direction, waiting for food, water, cleaning, and milking if any were still inclined--in those days January and February were months that not much milking was done, just enough for the table and cooking
After a while the snow on your clothes melted and it began to feel uncomfortable, but when you went outside your pantlegs froze almost immediately, and became like metal pipes around your legs
As a youngster then I helped my father as much as I could, but one job was usually left up to me bringing in the daily firewood supply, and filling up the wood box, which was a never ending job --two stoves--one for cooking, and a large box stove that you could drop in large chunks of elm, one on top of the other--pieces that had resisted splitting, and so were left for this stove.
The old car was parked for the winter not to move a wheel for many months--the snow was 3 feet high right outside the doors, with no way to move it then.