Winter arrived in Toronto yesterday. Temperatures fell, and the first light snows blew in, and melted, and blew in again. I was out in the country, up near the Kawartha Lakes, with Boyd and Francine and Mary Wiens, and the snow was much harder up there: roads were slippery, the gusts blew in more regularly, and on the way home, in the dark, visibility dropped, at times, to almost nothing.
Still, with true Canadian fortitude, we picnicked outside in the Ken Reid nature conservancy,
and went for a walk afterwards, along a snow-filled road, and down to the boardwalk and the Kawartha Lakes. It’s bear country out there, and there were warnings posted, but the bears were all too sensible, I guess, to come out in such weather.
We stopped off afterwards in the pretty little town of Lindsay, and went for a stroll up and down the main street. It was sunny when we got there, the air was still and felt almost mild – and then, in seconds, the sky blackened, the wind got up, and a howling blizzard came sweeping down, carrying everything before it. Ten minutes later, the storm passed, and just as suddenly it was clear again. I’ve never seen anything like it – I would not have believed the weather could change so rapidly, and change back so quickly, almost at the press of a button.
On the way back we passed through Uxbridge. It was growing dark, and dozens of families were coming out, children were playing in the snow on the sidewalks, there were little sleds for the infants and Christmas lights in the windows: the Christmas parade, we guessed, must have been what was drawing them. It was such a peaceful, pretty, happy scene – truly Christmas in winter, although still only November!
And then, on the way back in to Toronto, the snow started falling again, and the visibility plummeted. Long lines of cars picked their way slowly and carefully through the darkness. We were glad to get home eventually, all in one piece.