A comfortable Evening

October 22, 2008
By Katie Stahl, Trent, SD

The snow falls quietly and gently outside my window, dusting the trees with powder and making a blanket of white over the cars that reside on the street. The ground is cold enough that the snow does not melt, and the air so chilled that the snowflakes do not stick together. No wind stirs the night, making it perfect weather to stroll down the street and no sounds seem to break the peaceful reserve that nature has slipped in to. I press my hands through the snug fleece cuffs of my black winter coat and place my black beanie on my head. After zipping up my coat, I kneel down to cram my feet into my worn-out, black Vans. I heard a grumble from my mom behind me but shrug it off and stood. I reach for the gold handle of the cream colored door, which we so often used as our personal entrance and exit, and feel an electrical shock from the metal doorknob. Although it is very unpleasant, I continue to grasp the handle, rotate it, and tug the door open.

A pleasant waft of cold air hits my face, spills into the entry way, cascades down the stairs, and creeps into the kitchen. I breathe in the crisp winter air and step out into the night; out of habit I push my hand into my fleece lined pocket. As my foot lands on the first stair, frightened flakes scuttle away. More flakes flee from destruction as my foot falls to the second, and then finally the concrete of the driveway. I smile and continue my path down to the street, then turn and linger, looking at the houses around. All the houses are glowing comfortably, wrapped in their blankets of snow and lying on their foundations as if they have been there for an eternity, though some have not been there for longer than five years. Smugly I turn and continue on my hundredth tour of the streets, stepping off to the side for cars and occasionally cutting through a yard.
Finally, I reach my destination. I did not know that I had one, though my seemingly random path is somewhat familiar, but I end up here anyway. I pull the white storm door open, then hold it with my hip as I reach for the brass handle of the second, wooden door. Closing my hand around the brass handle, feeling my fingers nearly freeze, I twist it and push the door ajar. Light shimmers on the large square window in the on the door and warm air touches my cold, reddened hand. Carefully I close the doors. Stripping myself of my damp coat, hat, and shoes, I open yet a third door and flood the porch with warm waves of air. Two heads appear from upon the couch, the twins I know so well. Another person is strewn across a love seat, so enticed by the quiet television that he does not hear my entrance or notice the twin’s smiling faces. I smile back at the kids, and then casually walk around the love seat, since it was facing opposite the door, and place myself in between the TV and the person on the love seat. Taken by surprise, the young man on the love seat moves to accommodate me and lazily drapes his arms around me. After a short while the rest of the family, a grade school aged boy and the single mother of them all, shuffles into the room and joins us in being mesmerized by what’s on the TV.
This is certainly a comfortable evening.

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