I’m from Adelaide. The very first time I saw snow, it was at the beginning of 2017. My boyfriend and I were sitting on a flight between Seoul and Sapporo, and, as we were coming into New Chitose Airport, we were flabbergasted by what we saw though those rounded windows. The ground was covered in a strange white-grey blanket, with the tops of tiny trees and gates and rivers scattered across it. We wondered: was it a lake reflecting the clouds? Did Hokkaido just go through some heinous flooding we hadn’t seen on the news? It took us stupidly long to realise to obvious: it was snow.
So, when the snow began to fall on Tokyo a few weeks ago, I was awed. To have snow falling in these tiny, billowing flakes outside my window—to be able to see that happening, right from the warmth of my writing desk—was absolutely remarkable.
I love snow, though I know that it’s simply a novelty for me. I know that it’s inconvenient and hazardous and soaks my shoes and hurts my toes as I walk to work, but there’s something so enchanting about the purity of it and the way that a person can go to sleep, having walked home on hard ground, and wake up the next day to soft, crunching whiteness covering everything.
The night it happened, we went walking through a park that’s not too far from our apartment. I dove into an untouched patch and made my first snow angel. It was surreal. I felt such innate excitement and wonder, and every worry I had that day dissolved; nothing terrible could happen in a world that snowed this beautifully. For this was magic, manifesting in the only way it can for mere mortals who read fantasy stories rather than live them.
I adored the snow. But spring comes for us at a terrifying rate and soon it will be warm again. The blossoms will come out and the coats folded away. The snow has melted now and I miss it. It came and went so fleetingly, it might have never happened at all.