Winds of Change

Outside, the far buildings become matted with the dark clouds behind them, despite the bright sunlight in the west landing bold on their faces. In short time, the winds pick up. They whistle through the halls, here unthinkably on the 22nd floor. A moment later, my glance is cast out the kitchen window. White streaks shear sideways. The snow comes harder and harder, as the gusts become constant windstream. I watch as a few lucky pieces of debris dance high between and above the concrete giants of TriBeCa.

Across the way, though, is a large cardboard box. Its square shape spins and flies, peering into the windows of the apartment buildings that my own window faces. This is not a thing meant for flight - its architecture screams this fact. And yet, it continues to flail effortlessly hundreds of feet in the air, until the wind brings it crashing down on a metal awning, the sound reaching me a moment later.

The unwelcome flakes, months late and thus forgotten otherwise, descend in god-sized handfulls. Crosswinds collide and swirl in ethereal swarms high above rooftops, their contents escaping to land below on car alarms and pedestrians, collecting on an unprepared, bracing ground.

Windowsills start collecting powder in minutes, and I imagine streets become unnavigable with cold sheets. My range of vision, though clear within this apartment, outside is milky and hazy in the distance, and grainy up close like a small film stock blown up to fill an Omni screen. When I go to look at the streets below, they are still black. Convection currents make the snow nearest my window fall upwards. Perhaps only a finite amount of snow has fallen, and the winds refuse to let it settle down below.

Regardless, the winds of change are dancing outside manically, curmudgeonly wringing their hands. The people below shriek, some gleefully, and others in defense. A winter delayed has arrived all at once, commanding the sudden and unwavering respect of millions. And a moment later, it's gone. The sky is a creamy blue with intermittent clouds, and a white bag falls gracefully before a brown-building backdrop.