New Year’s Eve

DSC06066But for staying out until 3am at a rocking great affair at my brother’s New Years Eve in 2000, I am not a New Year’s Eve party aficianado. The weather can be both challenging and boorish; the after midnight drivers even more so.  Some years I would head home at 11:30, and listen to the festivities on the radio in the driveway. But in 2005, nature put on an unforgettable New Years party.

DSC06054We had hung big gold stars and red modern sputnik ornaments in the lindens on the drive in November-it was a good look.  I think ornaments look much better on deciduous trees than evergreens-they can swing free and be easily seen. Rob has a way of casually dressing the trees with lights that at first glance looks like his blood pressure is too low-but a second good look says otherwise.  So far, so good. Branches, red and gold-what could be better?

DSC06053Better was on the way; December 29 we got snow.  Not a snow storm-a blanket of snow.  It fell softly and steadily all day, and all night, and on into the 30th. Snow souffle-everywhere. All that white fluff changed the landscape completely.  I had placed hickory fence poles in each corner of the front pots and wedged a giant grapevine sphere in between them-all in an effort to figure out what to do with some 25 lengths of hickory wood and bark strips Rob had brought over from Belgium.  Do you see those curving strips?  Truth be known, they were nothing much until the snow came. The snow was beginning to make something substantial of something gestural.

DSC06057The thicket of linden branches overhead caught a lot of this snow-it stuck and kept on sticking to every branch, top to bottom.  Never have I seen branches so dressed up. The hot garland lights shed the snow, and kept on glowing.  What was to come had nothing to do with me, and everything to do with  the weather. Timing is everything-is it not?

DSC06062The snow kept coming, amiable and relentless.  Slogging through it during those two days was a workout, but late that New Year’s Eve stands out in my mind as the most breathtaking collaboration of electricity, frozen water and landscape that has been my privilege to witness.  Happy New Year to you, best regards, Nature.  

DSC06063A nine inch frosting of snow on this concrete table and matching chairs brings their design to the fore in a way a sunny July day would never do.  All that white snow ramps up and multiplies the effect of those diminuitive lights-never mind that garland lights eliminate all that useless cord and concentrate the light. Fine, some good holiday lighting technology – the entire shop was in a very special state of reflective illumination beyond my efforts.  

DSC06055The boxwood eventually succumbed, and splayed out from the weight of the snow.  I know not to fuss with frozen evergreen branches, but I was wringing my hands seeing this. The older I get, the better I am in not intervening in situations beyond my control. The bugs, the rabbits, the fungus-they get the run of my place. The snow-I have no plans to intervene, only some plans to watch. 

Shovelling ten times in three days made it possible to get to the front door. But should this picture not convince you that a landscape, and all that goes with it, would not delight your eye every month of the year, call me. If you cannot believe this is my most exciting New Years ever, you just don’t know me that well yet.

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Should you live in a part of the world that has clear skies this New Year’s Eve-lucky you.  This picture of the shop at New Year’s in 2006 has the blue moon look-but not the blue moon.   This holiday blue moon-so rare.  I am sure I will be waking up regularly all night, though my forecast calls for clouds all night long. Hope-that’s the big idea behind the new year, yes?  Happy blue moon.