Writer's Block

The USA is the place I was born. Canada is the place I was raised. Taiwan is the place in my heart.

Friday, December 03, 2004

From Snow Days to Typhoon Days

Looking out my window this morning at the rain which was to precede Typhoon Nanmadol, I noticed that the rain drops looked


the rain looked just like falling snow.

I've just breezed in and out of Ottawa, Canada in just over four days, and this morning I also heard from relatives back in Ottawa that they've been having light snow showers. So I'm missing the sight of peaceful, fresh, fallen snow- the kind that quietly, magically transforms a landscape into softness overnight. In the darkness, streets twinkle and sparkle like fairy dust under the light of street lamps.

Typhoon Nanmadol was supposed to hit Taiwan sometime this afternoon. And apparently, this time southern Taiwan won't be safe. Fortunately, Kaohsiung has been unaffected by the typhoons that struck late in the season (late August-October). When I heard that yet another typhoon was on its way, I thought to myself "how odd, it seems quite late in the year for typhoons to still be happening." According to news reports here, if Nanmadol strikes it would be the first typhoon to hit Taiwan in December in meteorological history.

Then came an announcement advising people to cease campaign activities for the upcoming legislative elections (December 11)- due to Typhoon Nanmadol.

On such rainy "typhoon days" some people hole up at home, stock up on groceries and bottled water, seal their windows... businesses and schools close... giving people an excuse to have a "play day"- out shopping, at the movies, or having a leisurely lunch out. It made me reminisce about the "snow days" we looked forward to as children in Ottawa. It always seemed like at least once during the winter season- the snow would fall continuously and snowbanks that were more than waist high accumulated. It meant a day off from school, staying at home with Mom- lying in the fluffy fresh fallen snow making snow angels, building a snowman, and warm soup after a "hard day's work"... or a half day at school watching movies in the gymnasium as the school prepared to close early and arrange for school buses to take us home.

When was the last time I did any of those things? If I were in a vast, freshly snow covered field now, I'd be so tempted to flop down on the bed snow and leave my own imprints of snow angels... to play and perhaps even build something. I remember the wondrous sight of the ice sculptures at the annual Ottawa Winterlude. There's something so enchanting about building a snowman and sandcastles- that brings out the child in us all.

Today, I simply spent my "typhoon day" with my Mom, having all-u-can-eat hot pot for lunch and shopping all afternoon.


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