Text by Jorge Arauz, Editor in Chief. Photo by Tina Cleland | July 7, 2018 | Lifestyle

When I was a kid, I thought that snowflakes were big, sharp, beautiful things that dropped out of the sky and impaled people in the jugular like falling coconuts in the Caribbean crack skulls. I guess I have winter in Kindergarten to blame for those head-sized paper snowflakes we made for Christmas. Throughout my life, conversations about snow never really came up. In Miami, we were more concerned with likes of Andrew, Charley, Dennis, Frances, Irene, Jeanne, Katrina, Rita and Wilma, among many, many others. Hurricane Frosty was just not in the cards. Ski trip in the mountains or a winter conference in NYC? Don’t RSVP me! So you can imagine my shock this past December when I found myself in D.C., right in the middle of the largest snowstorm the area had witnessed in recent memory. As I sat stuffing my face with homemade cookies and eggnog by the fireplace, watching the snow accumulate outside, the friends I was visiting for the holidays scrambled to get me gloves and scarves. They layered me with thermals, sweatshirts and thick jackets. My head was insulated and my feet double-socked and fitted in rubber boots. I was frightened of my own reflection, but was even more terrified of what was waiting for me outside. I darted out and knew instantly that the pointing-and-clicking of the camera would not stop until frostbite starting pouring out of my eyes. In less than 15 minutes, I resurrected Frosty the Snowman (well, almost); I made a slushy with my teeth; and I threw a snowball in my face. It was magic. It wasn’t until I couldn’t tell if my lips were smiling or frozen stiff that I decided to head back in. The exposed skin on my face was red and sore, and my eyelashes had turned into little icicles. As I thawed under a fire-hot shower, I thought my body would crack like an ice cube. Although literal brain freeze had set in, I remember thinking how happy I was that my first encounter with the white stuff was so well documented. It would make for a great editor’s letter, I thought. In the end, snow is a lot like sand. It’s natural, it’s fun, you can build things with it, throw it, roll around in it. I even got some in my underwear. Hurricane Frosty? Maybe next year.
Jorge Arauz Editor-in-Chief