Southwest Ohio is under a winter storm warning today, with a high likelihood that we will be seeing a lot of white this weekend.
This calls to mind a passage in the Sherlock Holmes Canon:
It was a bright, crisp February morning, and the snow of the day before still lay deep upon the ground, shimmering brightly in the wintry sun. Down the centre of Baker Street it had been ploughed into a brown crumbly band by the traffic, but at either side and on the heaped-up edges of the foot-paths it still lay as white as when it fell.
Most people, without thinking much about it, probably expect the weather at Baker Street to be more like this:
It was a cold morning of the early spring, and we sat after breakfast on either side of a cheery fire in the old room at Baker Street. A thick fog rolled down between the lines of dun-coloured houses, and the opposing windows loomed like dark, shapeless blurs through the heavy yellow wreaths.
But our faithful Watson also gives us this beautiful passage:
It was in the latter days of September, and the equinoctial gales had set in with exceptional violence. All day the wind had screamed and the rain had beaten against the windows, so that even here in the heart of great, hand-made London we were forced to raise our minds for the instant from the routine of life and to recognize the presence of those great elemental forces which shriek at mankind through the bars of his civilization, like untamed beasts in a cage. As evening drew in, the storm grew higher and louder, and the wind cried and sobbed like a child in the chimney.
And this one:
It was a blazing hot day in August. Baker Street was like an oven, and the glare of the sunlight upon the yellow brickwork of the house across the road was painful to the eye. It was hard to believe that these were the same walls which loomed so gloomily through the fogs of winter.
I pay a lot of attention to weather in my own writing, and I love it in Sherlock Holmes. To see if you pay attention, I’ll send a free Holmes-related book to the first person who can identify the story source of each of those Canonical passages. Please respond here on the blog so I can see what time you sent your answer. If you have a problem with that (which occasionally does happen), send me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org