The fresh air-grilled chicken-crackling campfire smell of summer greeted us last Saturday night as we made our way through tall snow banks to our friends’ house across town.
We clumped toward the fire in our thick winter boots and held wool mittened hands up to its glow. Inside the house grew a neighborhood party with chubby- cheeked babies, frosted cupcakes and warm winter chatter, and we joined them for a while.
Eventually, though, Molly and I headed back outside, mesmerized by the fire, a friend we hadn’t seen for several months. We sat on summer chairs and listened raptly to an animated ghost story-teller, whose complicated yarn took most of the evening to unravel. In perfect syncopation, a passing train scored the tale.
Smaller than the snow banks that formed a perfect backdrop and perfectly lit by the campfire flames, our little bard paused only to breathe (and when he had scared himself a little.)
I don’t know what pleased us more, the surprise of a mid-winter campfire or the creativity of our third-grade host, but I can tell you that Molly and I thoroughly enjoyed our unorthodox winter night.