Having completed much of my Atlanta-based pre-holiday activities – including compiling and distributing to friends a CD of “solstice music” and the mailing off of my annual newsletter and reading list – the plan was to fetch my mom on Christmas Eve Eve from her house south of Atlanta, drive up to Blairsville, Georgia (near the North Carolina border) and spend two nights at my sister Gayle’s, then drive over Blood Mountain into Cornelia, Georgia to join the rest of the family for Santa, etc. on Christmas Day. And then drive back to Atlanta on Christmas night.
Instead, a heavy snowfall and suddenly plummeting temperatures across the North Georgia mountains prevented me from driving my truck off the mountain Gayle lives on. We had to forego the annual Christmas Day rendezvous with the rest of the family (including the three kiddies), and my mom and I ended up staying on with Gayle for almost a week before the weather – and quite a bit of snow-shoveling – allowed me to venture down the icy hillside onto the highway.
A memorable Christmas,! Much quieter than expected, for example, and certainly much longer than expected. But the company was congenial, Gayle was well-provisioned, and the snow was stupefyingly gorgeous!