Snow! “Now don’t eat it, Scout, you’re wasting it”

With the chance of a snow day looming and with the news of snow across much of Alabama my mind went to Jem and Scout and children’s priorities:

Next morning I awoke, looked out the window and nearly died of fright. My screams brought Atticus from his bathroom half-shaven.

“The world’s endin’, Atticus! Please do something-!”

I dragged him to the window and pointed.

“No it’s not,” he said. “It’s snowing.”

Jem asked Atticus would it keep up. Jem had never seen snow either, but he knew what it was. Atticus said he didn’t know any more about snow than Jem did. “I think, though, if it’s watery like that, it’ll turn to rain.”

The telephone rang and Atticus left the breakfast table to answer it.

“That was Eula May,” he said when be returned. “I quote-‘As it has not snowed in Maycomb County since 1885, there will be no school today.’ ”

Eula May was Maycomb’s leading telephone operator. She was entrusted with issuing public announcements, wedding invitations, setting off the fire siren, and giving first-aid instructions when Dr. Reynolds was away.

When Atticus finally called us to order and bade us look at our plates instead of out the windows, Jem asked, “How do you make a snowman?”

“I haven’t the slightest idea,” said Atticus. “I don’t want you all to be disappointed, but I doubt if there’ll be enough snow for a snowball, even.”

Calpurnia came in and said she thought it was sticking. When we ran to the back yard, it was covered with a feeble layer of soggy snow.

“We shouldn’t walk about in it,” said Jem. “Look, every step you take’s wasting it.”

I looked back at my mushy footprints. Jem said if we waited until it snowed some more we could scrape it all up for a snowman. I stuck out my tongue and caught a fat flake. It burned.

“Jem, it’s hot!”

“No it ain’t, it’s so cold it burns. Now don’t eat it, Scout, you’re wasting it. Let it come down.”

…from chapter 8 To Kill a Mockingbird Harper Lee.

As for the Poughkeepsie area – we may have had enough for this year already. The PDS Jems and Scouts might disagree.

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