When I was a kid we called in “conjuring”…thinking about something bad so much that you’d make it happen. You’d be talking about a bully you were afraid of and suddenly hear “talking about me?” in your ear. As you got older, the bully might be replaced by an evil co-worker or boss, as you vent about their lack of redeeming human qualities, while your office buddy tries to shoot you wild eyeballs to warn you that you have conjured up the devil and they are standing right behind you.
Following this theory, I believe we conjured up a near repeat of the Blizzard of ‘78, 35 years later.
To start with, there was way much too much talk about a snowy winter this year. It started last fall, with rumors that Mother Nature was going to make us pay dearly for our mild winter last year. I had never thought of Mother Nature as a vengeful person intent on making us miserable, but then again there are all sorts of mothers in this world. My lame attempts to turn the early tide by saying “I heard this winter was going to be mild!” was about as effective as one bird in the back of the flock trying to get the pack to take a hard left. But when we didn’t have significant snow by January, I thought we were home free.
Until we were reminded of the 35th anniversary of the Blizzard of ’78 and it all went bad.
This packed the double whammy of reminding me I’m old, as well as stirring up a frenzy of negative weather energy powered by memories, photos and stories about the historic blizzard. This snow talk was the storm before the storm as it turns out, and I could hardly walk a few feet without hearing the word “snow” coming out of someone’s mouth. At the coffee shop: “Here’s your change, did you hear about the SNOW?” At the gym: “Getting your workout in before the SNOW?” At Market Basket: Actually I didn’t hear anything at Market Basket because the line to get into the parking lot was backed up to Lynn because of the SNOW.
The result of all this SNOW talk was two days of shoveling, scraping and plowing as I tried to recall where I had left such things as the cellar bulkhead, our oil delivery pipe and my car, all of which had disappeared in snow drifts bigger than me.
And I think it’s our own fault.
In the good old days when I could afford glorious spa vacations, I splurged on a
trip to Miraval Ranch in Arizona, a fancy schmancy all-inclusive resort that teaches the transformative power of positive thinking. I learned a lot of lessons that week, and one that stuck in my mind involved a mountain bike class.
Before us was a trail covered with stones, boulders, logs and soft sand to simulate mud. We made the first attempt on our own, as I hit every obstacle in my path, reminding me why I needed a lesson in the first place. But before we tried a 2nd time, our teacher gave us one simple instruction. Focus on where you want to go, not the obstacles in the way. And by golly, it worked. Not just for mountain bike riding, but for pretty much everything. Because whatever we focus our energy on, we invite more of that into our lives.
And right now our energy is focused on snow.
Maybe you think my theory is cockamamie, and perhaps it is. But just in case there’s something to it, I’m starting a mini movement to encourage everyone to join me in thinking:
“Feels like spring. Feels like spring.”
Repeat daily until the first day of summer, just to be safe.
Because this is New England, after all.