My husband Tom and I lived for awhile in Kilmichael, Mississippi, in an old farm house off of Highway 413. Snow rarely graces the landscape of Northern Missisissppi, so when we were blessed with an accumulation of about six inches one morning, I became very excited! A snowstorm was a rare event!
I pulled on some rubber rainboots and ran outside to play in the snow.
I had a St. Bernard back then named Barney. He was a BIG boy. When he stood up on his hind legs, he was taller than I was! (This isn’t as big of an accomplishment as it sounds. I’m only four feet, seven inches tall. Still, this made him seem even LARGER in comparison to me. I always became a little nervous when he stood on his hind legs and put his huge paws on my shoulders.)
That morning, my full-grown St. Bernard became a puppy again! He dashed back and forth across the yard! He darted in and out of the cotton plants in the field. He saw me and started running. I immediately saw a problem.
"No, Barney," I called. "Stop, Boy! No, Barney. NOOOOOOOOOO!"
It was too late! Barney stood up on his hind legs, putting his big snowy paws on my chest, and we BOTH went sliding fifteen feet!
Barney and I skidded to a stop, about an inch from a tall tree in the front yard. The big dog was on top of me, licking my face and warming me with his dog breath. Tom saw us and actually had the nerve to LAUGH! Some people! He could have come out of the house and pulled me up off the ground, but he wanted to stay by the fire!
It was his loss, I finally decided. I had my dog, I had six inches of snow, and I had the Mississippi sunshine. Barney and I played in the snow for hours that morning! We played fetch, we played tag, we played catch with snowballs, and we played hide-and-seek (Barney ALWAYS found me.).
That night as I lay in bed, reflecting back on the fun we had, it occurred to me that I HAD made the right decision in going out to enjoy the snow. After all, I was only given 24 hours that day, and if I had wasted it being a spectator in life instead of a player, there was no WAY I could go back and spend the same time over again in a more meaningful way. I was GLAD I had spent the whole morning acting like a little kid . . . even if I DID smell like a St. Bernard by the afternoon!
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