Last winter, I saw snow on the ground ONCE, and it wasn’t very much snow. Winter was cold and dry. After surviving the previous winter, which I’d dubbed “The Long Winter,” I couldn’t believe how much I missed snow. This winter has started out a bit different. We had our first snowfall a couple of weeks ago. Then this week, a snowstorm was predicted for this weekend, starting on Friday. It was a great topic of discussion on social media and in person. There were some very pretty snowflakes on Friday, but they didn’t stick to the ground. Saturday came and went with a lot of grey and mist, but no snow. I woke up Sunday morning, hoping there would be snow, but was disappointed. But shortly after I got up, the snow started to come down. This time it stuck, and it kept coming! It snowed a lot of the day and we got several inches of snow.
One of the things I saw on social media this week said that when it snows “Beijing turns into Beiping.” Beiping is an old name for Beijing (it means northern peace). Apparently snow makes everyone nostalgic for the old days. After church I had a bit of free time, so I decided to take my camera out. Originally I was going to a park where you can overlook the Forbidden City. But I could see the ticket line before I got off the bus, and there was quite a line. There were also at least two guys with photo tripods on the bus, so I’m sure that the overlook was packed with photographers. I decided to skip the chaos and get off on at the next stop, a different park. It was also pretty busy, it seemed everyone who owns a DSLR in Beijing—many people–was out taking photos, and everyone else was using their cell phones to take photos. It was quite a fun atmosphere, even though it was busy.
Even though the sky was grey (it was snowing, after all), it was beautiful! Walking home tonight I was also reminded of how quiet it is with snow. It really is a nice change.
The one downside is that the sidewalks aren’t cleared very well. Salt doesn’t seem to be common, and most of the snow clearing is done with brooms (I probably should have tried to get a photo of that). But still, I love the snow. We can get more, as far as I’m concerned!