I love snow! I love it on the mountains. I love it in my backyard. I love it on the roads and streets. I love walking in it and I love driving in it. Snow is my favorite weather.

My Christmas tree is usually left up until sometime in February when the sun’s return is getting noticeable. With the longer days, I begin making plans to put Christmas away for another year.

But, this year the weather app on my phone kept promising a snow day, raising my hopes for a snow backdrop for my tree. Hope kept burning throughout February. Every snow day that disappeared was replaced with another snow day refueling my hope. Every time those hopes were dashed, I was tempted to give up and just put Christmas away. And every time I nearly gave in, another snow day appeared on the horizon.

Hope happens every year, but this year there was always a snowflake to cling to. So, I left the tree up and kept the lights glowing, just in case.

Growing up in Colorado certainly fed my love of snow. Denver was well-equipped to handle any snow that came our way. Snowplows kept the main roads clear, often mounding it in the center of the road when there was no more room along the curb. The center mound could be so high that you wouldn’t even see the oncoming traffic, but that protected you from the Sunbelt drivers.

My dad would pile us into the car for a drive around town to see the snow. He would meander up and down streets, drive around downtown, and challenge himself to get up hills. He never used snow tires or chains saying, “If you can’t drive without them, you shouldn’t be driving at all.” (PS: chains and snow tires do not give you permission to drive the regular, posted speed!)

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He would eventually find an empty parking lot and spin cookies until he had worn the snow down to pavement.

When I got my learner’s permit, my snow driving lessons began. I was the one who got to drive all over town, try to get up hills, and spin cookies. Before he would allow me to take my ’55 manual transmission Chevy out in the snow alone, he told me I had to get it to the top of Ruby Hill. It took me about three hours to get to the top and from then on, I have not met a snow storm big enough to keep me on my couch.

Generally, I prefer heading out around 10 p.m. when most inexperienced drivers are snug in their beds. But, anytime, day or night, I might be out there enjoying the snow, spinning a cookie or two here and there.

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Dianne Roth is a mother, grandmother, teacher, and freelance writer. She can be reached at:  baglady@cmug.com