A pure white hush has fallen over the city. Cars slow, lights sparkle, and sound is noticeably absent. Perhaps the reason I love snow is the quiet it brings to a place that is often much too loud.
Charlotte once was a quiet place, a place where stores were closed on Sunday, and the only sound you would hear before 7AM was that of song birds.
Now, when it snows if only for a brief moment the silence returns. Only the sound of falling snow flakes and a winter's wind. It surrounds my soul and comforts my heart.
Snow in Charlotte brings panic to most Southerners and disaster to some, yet to me its a welcome respite from the normal dullness of a Carolina winter. It never lasts long and since our Carolina Spring is only a few weeks away, I have no fear, and no need to rush it away. Which may explain why Southerners never shovel their driveways and why we build snowmen, they are the last sentries to fall when the sun returns often on the same day of a morning snow.
I listen to the pines and the wind sings a song of cold and ice. It eases and then swirls around the backside of my home and down the golf course fairway to the creek that lies just beyond the flood lights.
Its more than an hour before dawn and the snow is coming down in layers of cotton like softness. Now is the time I feel most alive, and in the wonder of it all there is no darkness as the snow brightens everything.
Within a hour of sunrise the golf course fairway behind and the street in front of my home will be alive with a children's joyous chorus of laughter, a day without rules, a day with snow.
And soon transplanted Yankees who brought snow shovels to their new southern homes will began clearing their driveways. A nerve jarring old habit, their metal shovels scrap across the concrete to remove less than an inch of snow. The echos of scrapping, banging, and grinding will continue until noon when at last every inch of what they consider, terrible white powder is removed. A snow free driveway is a sure sign of a northerner in a southern city.
But for now with coffee in hand and two black labs by my side the snow and the silence is mine and mine alone and it whispers peace.