Even after the snow on the ground has melted, there are brave testimonies of its recent presence; proud sculptures that reflect the creativity of children: Snowmen…or is the PC term “snowpeople”? They stand in yards all around town, wearing hats and scarves, some made of leaves. (Hmmm, I wonder if that’s to keep the cold in as far as they’re concerned.)
Snowpeople are perhaps one of the oldest and most universal expressions of art and play. They come in all shapes and sizes; some are very elaborate, while others are simple, just like the variations among humans.
They are hearty folk, often the last vestiges of winter to disappear.
When I was in the sixth grade, a neighbor, my sister and I built a snowperson we named Mrs. Watson, after the street on which we lived. She was so tall, we had to get a ladder to put her head on. She probably grew to about eight feet in height by the time we were done. I wouldn’t call her lovely; she was a bit lumpy and not all that well proportioned. Okay, what can you expect from three children on a cold winter day?
Mrs. Watson stood proudly in the corner of a neighbor’s field for the entire winter; in fact, it was mid May by the time she finally finished melting away. By then, she was only a shadow of her magnificent self.
Children aren’t the only ones who have fun with snow people.
A few years ago, my cousin told me about a niece who worked at a restaurant in a well known resort. There had been an unusually early snowstorm, so business at the restaurant was nonexistent.
My cousin’s niece (I’ll call her Lucy) clearly had too much time on her hands: She made three snow people and put them in one of the cars for the nearby tram. Then she called the operators’ station and said,
“The people in Car #8 will need a little help getting out.”
“Are they injured?”
“No, just a little cold!”