A fresh fall of heavy, sticky snow followed by a clear day creates a fairy-world of ephemeral beauty. Sunlight reflected off the now-blanketed ground softens shadows, filling in worry lines and erasing wrinkles. Such was the stage that was set for my New Year's day trip to the feral cat colony. Some left-over smoked fish that no one at my house could get much enthusiasm for was to be the kitties' holiday banquet. The dog walkers were on the trail, the buzz of my knobby bike tires on the crusted trail gave warning to the happy canines who frolicked in the snow.
As I rounded a turn by the oak grove I spotted a neighbor, walking with her deaf collie. I slowed to a crawl to prevent startling them, I knew from past experience that that old dog could hardly hear a thing. "It's only me" I said to my neighbor. We had met many times on this path, she was active in the neighborhood watch and local politics. "Hello," she smiled back, surrounded by snow-ermine branches; the direct rays of the sun were diffused by the trees over head, the river in the distance glowed with a white incandescence. Her usual cheerful demeanor and attractive features were, to say the least, amplified by the surroundings.
"It's a beautiful day, isn't it?"
Beautiful? Stunning is more like it, but this beautiful world is but a picture frame for the image of loveliness that is you...
"It certainly is."