Rio de la Fornasa, Venice | Mark Lindsay

There are times when the quality of light tugs at the heart. Like a familiar song or smell, it provides an onrush of emotion so poignant that we are instantly transformed.

Winter’s light is low and stingy. It provides little heat nor illumination. Yet what survives the sun’s low trajectory and thick, cold air, is stunningly lovely—a mysterious shroud of atmosphere. Often, when I step outside into the winter day I instantly feel the condensation of winters past. There is so much to breathe in among the cold dew droplets and particles of wood smoke. This morning as I write this, autumn wanes and winter looms over us with its tempestuousness. My ears are cold, the lingering effects from a chilly walk to the local bank.

Our natural inclination is to wish past the short, cold days and long for spring’s arrival. Yet, we’d be missing all the magic. Winter holds so much. Packed into the short days is a dream world that compels us to wrap up and hunker down. Simple walks become expeditions. Weather is front-and-center. We lean into the wind, add an extra layer of clothing, cover our necks and ears.

The smell of a wool scarf reminds me of all scarves. The anemic light of dusk reminds me of all winter nights. It is a poignant time of the year upon which so many memories are recorded.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

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