On Thursday morning, Texans throughout the state woke up a little chillier than usual. In much of the state, temperatures dipped below freezing overnight. The grass, however, was still green, the cars covered in nothing but, perhaps, a thin layer of frost.
Our friends in other parts of the country—the Northeast, the Midwest, even as far down the East Coast as Washington, D.C.—awoke to a layer of snow coating everything. And they shared pictures! Look at all this snow!
Central Park received at least ten inches of snow, with more falling. This is Belvedere Castle now, with the San Remo in the background. pic.twitter.com/x440FHcZra
— Manhattan Bird Alert (@BirdCentralPark) December 17, 2020
The snow is beautiful this morning! But it is A LOT of snow. TY to public works, essential workers, medical providers & first responders who still get up & at it – for us! Take care of your neighbors, check in on those who are unsheltered- services are available. #bosSNOWpoli pic.twitter.com/fQPspIWSi8
— Annissa Essaibi-George (@AnnissaForBos) December 17, 2020
Capturing #Pittsburgh this morning was like capturing a whole bunch of paintings. The snow covered trees and rooftops made for some absolutely incredible views, like this one of the South Side Slopes under blueish/purple skies. Definitely my favorite image of the recent snowfall. pic.twitter.com/gFN9uqwoB8
— Dave DiCello (@DaveDiCello) December 17, 2020
— Kaleigh (@therealkalesoc) December 17, 2020
The shots of snowy cityscapes, photos of playful pets, and images of lovely landscapes are beautiful, and they conjure a wistfulness in the hearts of a lot of Texans, who may or may not see any snowfall this year. Depending where they live, the odds change—Amarillo already got some back in October, while it’s so rare in the Rio Grande Valley that folks will toss snowballs in the freezer as keepsakes—but on a day like today, when social media is full of photos of people enjoying the wintry dusting, it’s hard not to feel left out. Our pets would look adorable dipping their wee paws into the snow, exploring the accumulation by sticking their cute lil’ faces into a pile of the stuff! Nothing says “infusion of holiday cheer” like a freshly fallen silent shroud of snow.
And yet. There will come a time soon—quite soon, probably, for hardened Northerners whose capacity for experiencing the joy of a winter wonderland has been limited by the frequent, repetitive dance of shoveling, plowing, scraping, and bundling up that seasonal weather signals—at which the bucolic beauty of the snow-covered landscape gives way to exhaustion. The snow is beautiful and makes you feel like you’re living in a Bing Crosby Christmas song, but it sure is a hassle.
Forgoing the beauty of the snow in exchange for not having to shovel it, or deal with graying piles of the stuff repeatedly melting and refreezing on the curb until you need an axe to get through it, is one of those deals that draws so-called snowbirds toward Texas. In normal times, the influx of Winter Texans is its own trade-off—great for the economy, weird having part-time neighbors—but you can’t fault anyone who’s had enough of the snow and wants to spend their winters feeling a little warmer.
On days like today, when everyone we know in the snowy parts of the country is seemingly enjoying hot cocoa and making snow angels, though, we’re a little jealous. When the novelty of the first snowfall of the season becomes the headache of the tenth, we’ll feel that a little less. In any case, keep posting the pictures of your kids and your pets and your snow-draped homes, and we’ll keep enjoying not having to shovel our driveways. Happy holidays, y’all!