I just don’t understand it. This thing of so many people looking out and saying they think the snow is so beautiful.

Actually, I don’t look out very much. I really don’t see any beauty, just trouble.

Living in the county on a pretty high hill where northern winds create deep drifts, life is all worry.

When you’re no longer young, shoveling snow is out of the question, and besides to clear us out, it takes lots of special equipment and people to dig and dump snow all the way to the back door, which, by the way, is frozen shut every morning and has to have a dose of de-icer before we can even get out of our winter prison.

Not a single member of our family would consider playing in the snow. There are no sleds at our house, and adding to the problem is the fact that I’m severely claustrophobic. Nothing makes that worse than being trapped in the house with heavy snow making it impossible to even see the highway, and having to draw shades and draperies to save on the heat bill and make the house more comfortable. It adds many more degrees to attacks that I suppose at more like anxiety attacks.

I’ve spent a good bit of time since Sunday night curled in a fetal position on the couch and covered from foot to the top of my head trying to breathe. Needless to say, we’ve nearly driven God crazy with our prayers begging for the heat to stay on and asking for care of everyone, including our daughter and her family in Kingsport, Tennessee, like as in Nashville, there is a lot of ice and power failures.

And there are the prayers for all these poor souls who are out day and night trying to clear roads for us and take care of all kinds of other problems.

Adding to all this, our cats have disappeared. We haven’t seen them since Sunday night, so we even lifted up a few prayers for them and all outside animals.

However, not even prayers can bring “Black Butt” back. He’s the big Siamese tom cat that had been so interesting.

Last week, when we had a burst of heavy snow just as I was leaving home for work, I fed the cats, but Black Butt, so named because the black markings on his back end, wasn’t there.

As I drove down the hill, there he was in the middle of the Pembroke Road. He had been roaming as he frequently did and was probably headed home for breakfast when he was hit.

Not knowing if he was dead or alive, I waited for a break in the heavy, early morning traffic, and then hurried out into the road to get poor old Black Butt.

There was no doubt; he was dead, so I picked him up, not anticipating that he weighed about 20 pounds, and I dropped him.

With traffic headed our way, I grabbed him again and got back out of the highway.

I had to get to work, and Ferguson still isn’t feeling too well and couldn’t get out in the cold and dig a grave, so our precious friend, Gena, came and got the cat and took it to her country home for burial.

Now, we are left to wonder if anything has happened to Speedy, Stripes and Sweet Face.

One thing we know, if she is still alive, Speedy will soon be having another litter of kittens if she hasn’t already.

We chatted with Andy Shemwell, who with his wife, Jennie, owns horses, and it made us feel better to know that Jennie had made sure each horse was fitted with a blanket.

One thing that snow doesn’t stop is the possum. Tuesday evening, we noticed the strangest long line in the snow stretching from the woods to the patio. I looked and the cat food was almost gone, so that long, straight line in the snow had to be the possum’s tail dragging as he ventured out for some cat food.

The birds have been interesting. All day Monday, they seemed to have difficulties flying in the heavy snow and wind. They just couldn’t gain much altitude and they would frequently bump into the glass room walls or a tree.

It was sad watching the birds as they tried to make their way through the snow. If they paused for a moment, they sank down to their necks, even the big cardinals and woodpeckers had the same problems.

Yes, Jennifer (one of my New Era bosses), my mother used to make snow ice cream, but I, who was used to having ice cream made with very rich Jersey cow milk and cream, thought the snow stuff was rather wimpy.

Then we heard that snow was becoming polluted so we never made any.

And when it comes to the smell of vanilla extract, my thoughts turn to chocolate pie to be enjoyed on a lovely summer day where we can look outside and see for miles and miles where it’s all green. Now that’s pretty.

Mary D. Ferguson is a staff writer and columnist for the Kentucky New Era. Her column runs every Saturday. She can be reached by telephone at 270-887-3230.

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