Last night I woke up to a perfect silence and discovered that the power was off. Outside the snowflakes drifted down. No cars on the road, no neighbors lights to shine in, no crazy duck hunters boating down the canal before dawn with the ice chinking as they broke through it, but then the beeps of my battery backup filtered through, confirming that indeed, everything else in the house was dead.
This morning, I woke to a white world. Only a couple of inches of snow, but gorgeous in the brilliant sunshine, and the power was back. I thought about a fire, but this is after all, a solar home, and the sun was shining, so I waited. I took my cup of tea and apple muffin straight from the oven out to the greenhouse, where it was warm and green, with fuchsias and paperwhites flowering, and persimmons ripening on the tree. Overhead, the melting snow from the roof fell like rain on the greenhouse, the sound reminding me of a childhood growing up in a house with a tin roof.
All day long, the weather behaved exactly as it is supposed to. The mountains to the west were shrouded in gray cloud, blocking them from view, while here on the east side, the sun shone brightly, just occasionally disappearing behind a stray cloud. And although it was close to freezing outside, and the wind was howling, the house began to warm, until by the afternoon it was a very comfortable 69, with no heat at all added by me.
But now, the cloud has drifted east, and the sun has gone. Time to light a fire.