lazy snow days

When I told my mother-in-law yesterday afternoon that I was home because of about four inches of snow, she laughed and said they had four feet in Billings. And below zero temperatures. Which makes the little bit of slush and snow, and a few days of temps in the teens seem just a little wimpy. Anyway, I had yesterday off, I guess because the forecast for 8 inches was too intimidating for anyone to wait around to see if it actually happened. It was a very lazy day - I actually haven't really gone anywhere but work since last Friday, not even to a grocery store or anything, so it's been a little weird. Not so much because of the snow, but more due to the fact that we're broke. Good timing of the two though. I don't feel so bad about not going out and spending money when there's a good excuse to stay at home. So, I baked homemade bread yesterday (the 2nd time in a week) and I tried to read Hemingway, but he puts me to sleep. I was excited to finally read some of his work, because he basically invented the clear sparse writing style that I love. Unfortunately, his stories really do nothing for me. I far prefer Ray Carver, who has sort of the same style, but for some reason resonates with me much more. Hemingway's stories don't really have any plot or any endings, and while sometimes I really appreciate unconventional ways of doing that, it just ended up annoying me. I do admit, some of his prose is really beautiful and I don't deny that he was a very talented writer. But that doesn't mean I have to like him. So, I tried it. I'll probably finish the book just because I always finish books, but I'm not expecting any great revelations. The odd thing is that the stories that are lauded as being his great works are the ones I liked the least, and didn't really understand why others would think they are so great. Just goes to show how different peoples' tastes can be. My favorite short stories are still Aimee Bender's, and I love the essay collection Boys of My Youth by JoAnn Beard, although I don't know if that qualifies as short story. It's more on the creative nonfiction essay side of things. I love authors that write about ordinary life, and the ones who take life and make it completely fantastical, like Bender or Federico Garcia Lorca. Anyway, I'm happy that it snowed because it was so beautiful. Walking home Friday night in the giant flakes falling through the streetlights was completely magical, and reminded me so much of home. I guess Montana will always be home, no matter where else I end up. It just feels familiar to have the dry cold weather and snow piled up outside. I missed it. And now it's a gray slush day instead, as we head back into the regular old Bellingham weather. We apparently even had two small earthquakes yesterday, I didn't feel either of them, but I've talked to people who did. Hopefully not a precursor of things to come...


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