Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Before Too Long...First Snow

Here in Northeast Ohio, we've just come through some of the hottest days we can remember. And it's not so much that they were so hot, but so constant. I spent part of the weekend in east central Ohio, at Jamboree in the Hills (more to come), and it was nothing but skin and Bud Light on a muddy hill in full sunlight for about eight hours with around 50,000 other people. Yet the heat did not deter the crowd from squeezing every ounce of summer fun out of the experience (although some of the drunks probably took care of that).

While we bemoan the fact that the heat has even the heartiest of us flipping on the a/c, all too soon Ohio will be under a blanket of fresh snow. Except for the hassle of driving, I do love the sight of fresh snow at night, glistening on the grass and the tips of trees, sending everything into a hush with a taste of peace and mystery. Of course, by February, I'm all but completely beyond this romantic notion and crying for the first robin of spring, longer days, and a sunburnt nose. But there in the deep winter night is always born a fresh idea rich and bold like thoughts sprung from the heart cheered on by a mug of mulled wine.

Here's a wintry delight in summer's dead heat: my favorite men all in one spot, playing for you a tune called First Snow. Tim O'Brien and Casey Driessen on fiddle, John Doyle on guitar, and Dirk Powell on banjo, recorded last fall in Asheville, NC. It's the kind of tune that will get the blood and bows moving on a cold winter night.

Music is coming back into my fingers now, not just in my head. With tunes to play and friends to play with, I have every reason to hope that this will be the best winter in a long time. I will be ready for first snow.



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