Monday, February 11, 2013

Snow-Flavored Burgers

There are two guys outside my window...barbecuing.

And no, in case you were wondering, I do not live in California anymore. I live in Utah, and currently it is the dead of winter. Not just the dead of winter, but it has been snowing almost all day with no sign of letting up.

But there they are, under a rather sparse tree, bundled up in their jackets and boots, flipping burgers on a grill.

Personally, I am quite obsessed with the seasons. I like to do things that are seasonal. During fall, I made something with pumpkin once a week. During winter, I’ve been drinking hot chocolate and making cookies more often than I probably should. In spring, I like to take detours around campus in the places with the most flowers. In summer, I like to go hiking and do “outdoorsy” things (even though I’m not a particularly outdoorsy person). The seasons are there for a reason, you know. It’s long been my belief that it doesn’t make any sense to wish it were any other time than now.

Unlike everyone else around here who is sick of the snow, I still throw open the blinds whenever there’s a snowstorm and plunk myself down in front of the window for hours so I can watch the snow fall while I write or read or cook. I’m making soup every other night and still searching for new recipes. I keep the heat lower than is comfortable so I can bundle up in blankets and drink hot cocoa. I have cookies in the oven right this minute, in fact. Needless to say, I love winter, and I won’t mind if it sticks around for a while longer.

So whenever anybody sighs and wishes for sunshine and flowers, I resolutely remember how much I love winter. (Rather smugly, perhaps.) And I secretly feel sorry for them for wishing things were any different.

But seeing these two guys, barbecuing as the snow falls into their burgers and hot dogs... Even as I chuckle, I have a sort of admiration for them.

They felt like eating barbecue. But drat, it’s snowing outside. Oh, why can’t it be summer already? they lamented. Then we could barbecue! Then they looked at each other with a glint in their eyes. Hey, what’s stopping us? We can barbecue whenever the heck we want, thank you very much!

It doesn’t look exactly fun to be standing out in the cold over a smoking grill. But they’re doing it anyway.

How often do I think, “Oh, I’ll do that later, I can’t do it now”? For some reason, I talk myself into believing that my current circumstances are keeping me from following my dreams, doing the things I’ve always wanted to do, and that I can’t do those things until my circumstances change. We all think this at some point or another--and maybe our circumstances really are hindering us from taking the plunge. I mean, it’s a lot more fun to barbecue in summer than it is in winter, and then your neighbors don’t laugh at you.

But if I just went out and did it, despite the circumstances? I would end up enjoying a smoky, delicious hamburger. And even more important, I would know that I was the victor, that something as petty as a little snow could never stop me.

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