The moon is a friend remembered as I step out into the dark night. I scan the trail and woods ahead relying on my headlamp to prevent any Moose surprises. My worn boots easily find their way up the slippery snowy trail; good traction - and I know where to step. I've only made this winter walk a thousand times, putting away ducks and chickens, tossing hay and saying goodnight to the goats. After a summer of sauntering through the evening chores in a skirt and sandals, in constant awe of the lush green banks and gentle late summer evenings, well the difference is night and day. I'm not use to the dark. I haven't seen the moon in several months. The ground is white with brown tufts sticking up everywhere. The Birch are bare, silver in the moonlight. The beauty now is in the stillness of everything. The nights are almost silent, punctuated by the occasional squabble from the the coop, and faint howling of sled dogs far off in the distance.
On winter evenings like these I am thankful for the moon, the lack of wind and the air which is warm enough that it is cold, crisp and refreshing, and not so cold that it stings and burns. I rejoice in putting on my boots, insulated overalls, wool hat and gloves, all old friends that have been on vacation for the summer. And then there is usually something new and special entering winter, this year it is my new Carhartt jacket which is light and durable and moves just right with my upper torso, not restricting, and best of all it doesn't hold onto hay like my sweaters or get snagged on fencing or gates like my down coat. The comforts of winter; quality warm work wear, a warm house - in particular a wood fire, hot food; especially soups and fresh baked bread, and the moon, always the moon, whether a sliver or a huge glowing orb in the dark night; on winter nights I am always thankful for the moon.
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