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Snow? … the bird-whisperer has a nice walk nonetheless …

I learn something new (whether I want to or not) most days.

And early this morning I learned that birds will chirp even as a light snow falls. As an amateur bird-whisperer, here’s my interpretation of one 6:25 a.m. avian conversation: “I wanted to fly to Florida but no, you said Charlotte was where birds flocked together. Mother said I should have nested with Randy Robin.” Or something like that.

As soon as I stepped out the front door in the 33F snow/drizzle mix, it was pre-determined that only non-degradables (i.e. plastic and polystyrene) were on today’s pick up list. Paper? Too soggy. It would remain in situ for later retrieval.

To this former Midwesterner, there’s something nice about a snowfall. It muffles the non-bird sounds of an already quiet morning. Charlotte goes all atwitter, however, at the very mention of snow; it gives owners of rugged SUVs


Okay, let’s be real here. This isn’t your typical Midwestern snow storm but it’s the best my South Park neighborhood has seen this winter.

all the rationale they need to justify their vehicle purchases even though the pavement was far too warm for the wet snow to stick. (It crossed my mind to wonder how many slipped their transmissions into four wheel drive gear.)

The skiff of snow did its best to hide what might normally be seen and retrieved. Indeed, not a single scrap of anything was located in the first mile. That left me to sip coffee uninterrupted.

That abruptly changed along Fairview Road. My first find was a flattened water bottle at the entrance to Phillips Place and a few feet later was a chunk of car bumper from some unfortunate car-to-car encounter.

By the end of mile 2, the bag was nearly, but not quite, full. At this point, there was praise given to my new Yeti knock-off coffee mug that kept the morning joe hotter than expected. Sweet.


Not quite a true winter glistening, but you get the point.

By the end of mile 3, my shoes made a squishy sound you might not normally associate with snow. A few chunks of polystyrene – likely wind blown across Sharon Road as residue from the same batch bagged Saturday morning – made the ‘must pick up’ list. And then it was on to home from there.

In all, it was a pleasantly sodden journey. It’s mornings like this when more praise is meted out; I thanked the good Lord aloud for the health to do such a sordid chore and for one more day above ground. At the front door was the Sunday New York Times (real news). Then it was time to nuke the remaining coffee and get some oatmeal started on the stove.

It’s already been a good day.

About Dave Bradley (264 Articles)
I was a writer by trade so one would think letters would come easily for me. It is so now, but wasn't always that way. Indeed, the first letter was written the Monday after Ellen started her freshman year in college. For years I've wondered - with no good answers - why I swiveled my office chair toward my computer screen to fire up a word processing document for that first letter. I just don't know. I just did. Perhaps it was the angst of separation or wanting to say things that had gone unsaid at that moment when we parted ways in front of her college dormitory. What was a one-off became habitual. When her brother Reid enrolled in the same college, his name was added to the salutation line. They were kids then and are adults now. No matter. The letter writing habit remains so today. I live in Brevard, North Carolina. I'm well away from where they live and don't see them nearly as often as I'd like. That's why letters, at least to me, fill the void of distance. The pages give me something to say and the space to say it. There is no assurance they read the letters; indeed, I have never asked if they do so. With the pace of their busy lives who could blame them for letting a letter sit unopened? Over time, it has dawned on me that the letters are both communicative - and cathartic. By nature, letters are about the writer; the writer can only write about their situation. Perhaps that is as it should be. It's all about the here and now from one person's perspective.

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