Every exhale left a mark in the air, a very small cloud all my own.  Each footstep, too, left an imprint into the feathery, thickening dust of the snow.  The big, puffy flakes were falling in a steady rhythm to their own music.  They showered the world in brightness; as if the stars had relaxed too much and left their pristine prisons in the sky to lazily drift to the earth…

It was not so very cold; the cusp of freezing.  It felt, more simply, alive than anything else.  The way the weather tingled and tickled against any skin; the same sensation accompanied every inhale as the winter introduced itself to my lungs. I hunched inside my light sweatshirt and held the towel tighter around myself without realizing.

I walked the familiar path to the Pond, crossing the trail now boasting markers for snowmobilers and dogsledders.  I smiled at the markers.  They must have been put up over the weekend.  Signs of winter.

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