Snow is falling outside gently onto ground already frozen by weeks of temperatures below freezing. Our high each day doesn't break 30 F. I have learned to dress in many layers and that in doing so, you can actually get hot while shoveling manure and carrying hay. With the reduced daylight, it seems that I no sooner put the horses out and do stalls, then it is time to go out and reverse the process. The horses stand at the gate wondering what is taking me so long.
I feel sorry for the chickens, who must go outside in their bare feet. I wonder if they make little booties for chickens? They stand, holding one foot up, then the other, fluffing all their feathers trying to warm themselves. Mostly, they get back in their coop to roost under their heat lamp. Small wild birds have discovered their free-choice food and heated water bowl, and the chickens do not seem to mind their company. The wild birds, however, have found they can go in the side of the coop where the heat lamp sits and warm themselves. This is puts them directly over the chickens, however, who emerge each day coated in bird crap. They don't seem to notice.
The winter snow advisory told us to expect 3 to 5 inches of snow. In Kentucky, that causes a great deal of excitement and could, if it happens, shut down the city. Our county schools are indeed already closed and there is less than an inch out there now. At Wal-Mart yesterday, there was more joviality than I observed before Christmas. People were laying in a store of frozen pizza, soda pop, milk and donuts and so on; you know, the necessities. In case they might have a week off to watch TV and eat. Kids were excited for a snow day, because they had been back to school all of two days.
The weather has not had a good effect on my own appearance. Putting on stocking caps and having the frigid wind at my face, I look in the mirror and see Snape looking back at me. I am looking forward to spring.