Imagine for a brief moment that you are standing on the sidewalk in a busy city as the snow falls fast and the wind whips, grasping at you with icy talons. All of the sudden in the midst of nature’s temper-tantrum of frigid pandemonium emerges a clean aerodynamic form as it roars past; you cannot see into it and whoever (or whatever) might be within its confines (presumably) cannot see out of it. What are you thinking in that moment? What do you do? How do you react? Do you suddenly think we aren’t alone in the vast cosmos? A week ago that was me. I wasn’t the bewildered bystander though, I was the unseen one inside the all white alien form, and that form was the FENX.

Last week was baptism by snow as I slowly made my way home across the treacherous “Hothscape” that Washington, DC had transformed into over a matter of hours one afternoon. The government shut down around 3 pm that afternoon and I left “early” at 5 – already too late as I would soon learn. As I locked myself into the FENX; inserted keys; flipped switches to activate displays and check lights; set the Blue-tooth on the phone so I could catch-up on Star Wars: The Clone Wars Round-table discussions, all of this was routine but I knew this was going to be an adventure and visions of The Empire Strikes Back started to dance across my cortex. The snow was falling and it was sticking to the FENX with no place to go. Before too long I was having a tough time seeing and often opened the canopy so I knew where I was headed. My memorized route was being altered by law enforcement as there was too much snow to know what to do with and I was praying safety a mile a minute even though the FENX is a veteran survivor of storms (but of the summer sort). As I slowly went along the weight of the snow gave my muscles a run for their money in lifting the viewport for sight (but I empathized with Luke Skywalker’s plight of the downed Snowspeeder and trying to open the canopy to escape the oncoming Imperial Walker). I can only imagine what passersby must have thought as they saw me roll by. In the end (thanks to much evident grace) I made it safely home and away from the world of Wampas outside. I knew the White Warlock of Old Man Winter had returned and caught me unawares; thus one of my greatest enemies had returned and our struggle began once again – and I was clearly losing.

The White Warlock and I aren’t friends, never will be. Quite honestly when I think of Winter I think of Jadis, the Usurper, the self-proclaimed and wrongful ruler of Narnia; since Old Man Winter and the idea of a Witch or Queen don’t gel all that well, I go with Warlock (it’s gender proper and still filled with the correct sense of frigid malice). Winter is a sad state of being for planet earth and even various ancient cultural mythologies bear this out – Greeks probably best with Persephone going to spend time with Hades (fitting as Winter IS hell for me). The best thing about Winter is Spring. Winter finds the cold targeting me with a vengeance, seeping into my bones and enabling them to groan to life as if they are now a separate entity freed to do as they will, independent from me with one overriding thought – cause pain (think zombies on a microscopic level). In Winter’s grip I am often at my weakest in body, limping, struggling, and trudging – just trying to make it through the day with a smile (and sometimes struggling in mind). In this dark time, when the Empire of Body seeks to subjugate the Will through fear and pain, I am in such need of Help and New Hope. The fact that Snowpocalypse III is literally sweeping most of the nation right now and headed this way doesn’t help. It is in this time that I remember that “fear is the mind killer…”; I recall “The night is darkest just before the dawn, and the dawn is coming” and I cling to one simple and profound truth – In Brightest Day, in Blackest Night, I cannot escape His sight, He who loves me with all His might, He casts out (all) fear, Jesus Christ – the Light.

For All Will be Made Right, when Aslan Comes In Sight.

Riding Towards Eternity,

Aaron

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