Wednesday, October 18, 2006

...and you'd be right! On to the post:

Colorado is beautiful. I’ve lived here all my life, just like 3 generations before me on my dad’s side and 5 generations on my mom’s. Although it would be fun living somewhere else for a change (Stephen and I are considering it), I’ll always want to move back to Denver. The weather, the aspen, the mountains, the city, the everything. I adore it.

Yesterday was our first snowfall; we got about an inch (I didn’t read the weather report and wore flip-flops like an idiot). I love watching the big flakes floating down, in no particular hurry- it causes me to slow down and relax. I love hot chocolate, I love wearing scarves and hats and warm socks and long sleeves, I love reading by the fire with a glass of wine. I love skiing and snowboarding (I’ve been boarding on my own for a few years, and this year I’m learning for real).

But this morning, I remembered something about this season of sport and snow that I hate: scraping ice off my windshield. No on likes getting up in the morning, leaving the warmth and comfort of sleep to face the cold, cold world. It’s no fun at all leaving your house to get into your cold car/walk in the cold to the bus stop, but it’s bearable. But it’s the WORST to be already late (in my case) and have to shuffle around your car scraping all the ice off the windows. It really shouldn’t be THAT bad, but there’s just something about having to do this tedious task that I cannot abide. I always end up missing spots on my windshield so my wipers won’t work right, or screwing up the way I’ve got my side mirrors set, or getting myself all snowy and wet. It's a craptastic way to start your day.

Before I end this post I’de like to say a few words regarding recent comments by Tony Blair (UK Prime minister) and Jack Straw (UK Foreign Secretary). Jack Straw recently asked Muslim women visiting his office to remove their veils. Tony Blair said the veil is "a mark of seperation" that "makes other people... feel uncomfortable", which has led to leaders suggesting banning the veil altogether, much like France has done in its schools. This has sparked a heated discussion on religious freedom and the value of an integrated society both within and outside the Muslim community.

I will admit that the veil is little understood by westerners, and complex at best. Some say the veil is meant to protect a woman, that by wearing it she is keeping her beauty secret and sacred, and that it is a relevant and appropriate practice. Other say it is a sign of a woman’s enslavement, that her husband is exersicing control over her, and that it is an oppressive and antiquated tradition. Regardless of how any individual may feel about the tradition of the veil or the motivation behind this practice, we simply cannot mandate against it. We pride ourselves in the west on religious freedom and tolerance; taking away a woman’s right to wear a veil is taking away her basic freedom.

Most American women would be furious to move to Afghanistan or Somalia and be forced to dress in the manner of the majority of women there- it would take away their rights. Why should WE presume to do any differently? The notion of prohibiting something as simple as a Muslim veil, which does no harm in and of itself(other than make people uncomfortable) is unfounded and ridiculous. Society has always feared what is different, what it does not understand. I am not a Muslim, and I don't wear a veil. I'm a Christian and I wear normal American clothes (not counting flip-flops in snow). I'm not even friends with any Muslims, but I am irate. This controversy makes me very nervous for my own civil liberties- what will politicians think of next?

3 comments:

I Hate Housework said...

While you are up there worrying about scraping snow off of your windshield and leaving the warmth of your home, I am down here in Louisiana still running my Air Conditioner. It is raining outside, my AC is on, and I'm longing for some cooler weather (even just fall weather would be nice; I'm just tired of 90 degree days), but this is where I live. I chose it - to a degree - Hubby and I both grew up here, traveled around while he was Active Army, then came back "home" when he got out. We could have gone anywhere, but for some reason (probably to do with family) chose to come back here. We're thinking of retiring in NYC or Europe. Hmmm, yep, we have both our feet on the ground.
Anyway, from us down here to you up there, enjoy the cold, we'll get a little of it eventually. (Not much and not for long)

Melissa said...

Rachel, I envy you... just a little though. I love everything Texas, but I've only experienced snow once and it was amazing! I had to wait 30 years for that, I wonder how long I'll have to wait again.

RachelRenae said...

I would send you some of our lovely snow, but that's another Colorado quirk: it's already melting away. It doesn't last long. :(

Thanks for the reminder, ladies: I'm remembering why I love the snow so much, despite the ice!