It took some time to dig out of the blizzard. Everyone was in the same condition. Cars were encapsulated, sidewalks were buried, and the snow plows struggled to catch up on the roads. Though we missed our opportunity to go to Fairbanks, we were grateful that we weren’t caught out in the blizzard.
We had some days where the temperatures were getting warmer. Alaskans are eager to embrace any small hint of Spring. If the temperature rose to the 40’s, you could spot droves of people out in short sleeves, sun dresses and such. I was still in my winter clothes, but not as heavily layered. Still, as the days got longer and the snow melted there was an excitement in the air.
We went out to eat one night with the boys, and several of their friends. We were all laughing and having a great time. We enjoyed our family time with our friends. Davin was our comic relief that night. Regaling us with stories of his conquests and his defeats. He was particularly funny when he told us of his embarrassing moments. Only Davin could recall these moments and turn them into a moment for stand up comedy. We laughed so hard our sides hurt.
We were in the midst of Lent and both boys had asked me what I had given up. It opened the door for an honest discussion. I told them after “failing” miserably at giving something up, I instead chose to add something to my daily routine. For instance, instead of giving up candy or something like that, I now chose to add extra prayer time for the less fortunate. This year I was praying for those who were in prison. They both thought about it and it was one of the more serious moments I had experienced with both boys. I was touched that they even asked and then they tossed around ideas for their own Lenten experience. They didn’t share with me what their final decision was but I felt they had some serious thoughts on the subject. It was a step in the right direction.
We came up on the Easter weekend and the boys had some time off from school. We had some great meals and they helped me with the shopping. I bought a ham for our Easter dinner, along with sweet potatoes, green beans for a casserole and the ingredients for home made bread. We would be having a feast. I decided which service to attend for church. The day dawned and I was getting ready. The boys wanted to know where I was going. I told them, and both asked me to wait and minute and they would go with me.
The service was beautiful and clearly everyone in attendance was touched. We still had plenty of snow on the ground but temperatures were rising and rarely got down into the single digits anymore. I realize that Easter is traditionally a time when people wear their finest. Not many people in Alaska participate in that tradition since it’s just not practical. Some do, but inevitably it leads to a lesson in practicality and I suspect those who dress in such a way, are greenhorns. A greenhorn is someone who is new to Alaska and doesn’t know all the ins and outs of basic survival here. Such was the case, in the parking lot leaving church. As we were making our way to the car in the parking lot, we came up on a lady who had chosen to dress in all her finery for Easter. She was also wearing extremely high heels. She was picking her way carefully through the snow and ice when suddenly she lost her footing and started to slip and slide. She wasn’t going to make it. It was clear she was going to meet the ground. It all happened so fast. There was nothing we could have done to prevent her from falling. Of course, we went over and offered a helping hand. We weren’t the only ones. One little old man asked this woman point blank. “Why are you wearing those ridiculous shoes?” The poor woman was so embarrassed. She got up and made it to her car.
Once we were in our car, both boys were amazed that women could be so vain. They didn’t understand why this woman had worn such high heels in conditions so opposed to those kind of shoes. I tried to explain that every now and then a woman needs to feel pretty. They stuck to their guns on this one. Snow and ice was no place for heels. I had to agree with them but also explained the greenhorn effect. It’s not always easy to understand, especially when you’ve been here awhile. Aron, who was the more serious of the two, stated that all greenhorn women need to permanently fast their high heels once they come to Alaska. I must say, I agree!!