Thursday, February 05, 2009
Clear and Cold, Blue and White
Each work day I walk from the parking lot toward this building. My work place is saturated with natural light and has many windows looking out on the lovely grounds. This week brought more snow followed by clear skies and very cold temperatures. Follow me on my morning commute to this familiar place.
Before I leave, our dog goes for a brief outing to a post in front of the house. The snowbanks are so high he can not find a tree or pole to mark and it is impossible for him to run across the yard as the snow is now deeper than he is. My husband spends time outdoors almost every day to keep the walk and driveway clear of new and drifting snow but it is getting harder to find a place to put it all.
This is the view from my car window as I back out the driveway. It is impossible to see the road because of the high snow banks and we inch out cautiously hoping any approaching vehicle will honk or slow down to let us out.
It is nice to arrive at work in the sunlight. When the clock changes to Daylight Savings Time next month I will be arriving at dawn again until the days lengthen further. Today the sun was climbing over the river that runs below the hospital.
Cloudless winter mornings are cold, -18 C on this day*, but the sun has enough warmth to melt the roof top snow a little, creating icicles on the eaves. We have had enough snow to damage some flatter roofs where icy accumulations have built up. But the snow and blue skies do make a lovely winter picture. The house used to be a residence for female staff in the days when this hospital was a TB sanatorium.
This is the original sanatorium, now just a wing of a much larger health care complex. The first floor window arches are unique and graceful. The old balconies where patients used to sit in all seasons to get sunshine and fresh air are no longer used except by squirrels and birds.
One of my patients has spent most of her stay in bed, curled in a fetal position, resisting any attempts to get her involved in treatment. Today I wheeled her to a bright window overlooking the grounds and she lifted her head showing a flicker of interest in the white world and blue sky. I sat beside her and held her hand as she talked about her home and her life, the sunlight seeming to drawing her out of her shell for a few moments.
These are the best days of winter and the blue skies are appreciated even more when they appear after several days of grey dampness and snowstorms. And with this much snow, we need spring to come slowly with sunshine rather than rain to slowly melt all that white a bit at a time.
* this morning Feb 5th it is -29C at 8 AM... going to plug in the car!
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