Last week the incessant rain in Vermont suddenly thickened, became opaque. "It's raining snow!" wailed a friend, and that was right: big white globs the size of maple leaves splattering against the skylight and sticking to the hostas and junipers, coating the still-green grass and fallen yellow leaves with a strange whiteness.
The weight of an early fall snow often brings disaster too - trees fell, their roots wrenche from the ground by the sudden topheaviness. No such problem in our yard; the snow disappeared into the already sodden earth and we headed north, on Friday, thinking that the nearly-overflowing river was the only reminder of the storm.
But as soon as we began to climb up the foothills of the Green Mountains, we saw white: the tops of the mountains were covered with snow which gradually diminished to nothing about halfway down. We drove through the valleys, where the last of this year's dull fall color still clung to the trees, while the mountains towered above us, dusted as if by a heavenly shaker of confectioner's sugar, with the highest peaks shining in the sun like the mythical landscape of a digitally-enhanced film.
Here, in the city, most of the leaves haven't even fallen and finally, yesterday, there was sunshine and a blue sky. I celebrated with a long afternoon walk that included browsing at La Tricoteuse, the yarn store; a friperie (clothing thrift store) up on Mont Royal, and one of the French used-bookstores in the neighborhood. And although my café fare is likely to be a tisane rather than an espresso for quite a while, life begins to seem more normal.