Wednesday, February 13, 2008

ice fishing

Well, it's official - we have a record-breaking snow fall this year, more than has ever been recorded in Toronto history, how about that??? We are all just thrilled; nothing Toronto likes more than breaking a record.

Last night I had a class at U of T at 6.30, and as I struggled through the blizzard, the howling winds and whipping snow - like in a Russian novel, all that was missing were the wolves nipping at the troika - oh, and also the troika was missing - and climbed over snowbanks and slid on icy sidewalks, wearing many layers - long johns and undershirt, heavy wool pants, sweaters, down vest, puffy coat, hat, hood, mitts, boots, scarf covering every inch of face except a slit for eyes - as I laboured to get to work, I assumed there would be no one there. What lunatic would come out in this weather if they didn't have to?

Out of a class of twelve, nine were there, including Eileen who had driven for two hours down from the north. Incredible. We had a great class with the wind rattling the windows. My journey with students, our exploration of the wonder of writing is always a marvel for me, but last night was truly an adventure.

"It's a story," I told one student afterwards, as we stood on the desolate moonscape of College Street waiting, with the other silent huddled sheep, for the streetcar. "When you do what we do, write stories from life, everything is a story."

So here's mine.

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