In Maine, your fortitude is measured by how many winters you’ve endured here. On the day we arrived, in late December, the sun shone so strongly that we had to take our coats off while we were out for a walk. A farmer friend was harvesting the last of the parsnips while her little boy played in the field, redolent of rotting brassicas.
The next day was so cold, I could barely remove my mitten to take pictures of the snow-covered beach. Today, as more snow fell — a gentle snow, in warmer air — I walked out to the point and listened to the sound of the ice breaking up as the tide came in. What looked, in the distance, like a pile of rocks at the shore was broken up sheets of ice from the tidal movement.
Knowing the fire burns indoors, the cold white winter beauty is something to hold on to as we welcome the new year. No one will miss 2009, but it is certainly nice to end it with a blue moon, the first New Year’s Eve blue moon since 1990, and one we won’t see again for another 19 years (although the next blue moon will be in 2012).
Pictured: Rockwell Kent’s “Winter Sunrise.”