By Brooklyn Reader

February 2, 2015, 9:07 am

 

A Cultural BK Snow Day

A Cultural BK Snow Day

Yes, granted. Some folks are not so fond of the snow, particularly those in the New England area and those who have to spend hours rescuing a semi-buried car or wrestling with tortoise-paced traffic.

But to tell you “the God’s honest truth”, as the Tennessee elders used to say, I simply lo-oo-oo-ve the purity and enchantment of the newly-fallen snow; particularly the first snow of the winter season.

I guess it just “takes me back” to those memories of building snow men in Grandmama Anna Pearl’s backyard–near where the multicolored roses would bloom in the spring and summer seasons–to eating Mama’s delectable homemade snow ice cream, to sitting around the fireplace with the family, watching a tv movie or listening to engaging family stories while gazing dreamily from time to time out the window at the darkened Southern landscape alit with the brightness of a smooth snow carpet covering the grass and blanketing the Indian cigar trees.

So to this day, I’ve retained that enchantment with the snow. The first Brooklyn snow found me rushing through my bush bath (herbal bubble bath combined with a touch of organic apple cider vinegar) to get out there and just experience its atmospheric delights–while trekking to the supermarket to get some makings for black bean and clam soup and organic hot chocolate, a perfect treat for a snowy BK day.

Rachel Rampleman blizzard in brooklyn (snow day!), january 2011

Photo: Rachel Rampleman
blizzard in Brooklyn (snow day!)

I did all of the preceding and in the process, found that it was spiritual synchronicity that I was lured from the radiator warmth of my Brooklyn abode to the cold, but picturesque (and temporarily unpolluted) first snowfall; because what pleasant surprise did I find awaiting me in the grocery store but my ole brother-buddy, Louisiana blues man Jesse (“Easy in the Apple”) Thomas–brother to long-time community contributor, poet Mae Jackson of Art Without Walls.

The same Jesse T who had thrilled audiences when performing with our “storytelling musical” on the life of Nana Harriet Ross Tubman; the same long-time Brooklyn-dwelling Easy (his nickname) who had rented a van and chauffeured a group of us culturalists to Florida when I got the contract to take a cross-Atlantic Bahamas Junkanoo performance to the Super Bowl XXXV’s Corporate Hospitality Village. Oh what an experience that had been– not to mention those many occasions when Brother Easy would drive me to the airport for early a.m. flights and we’d chatted animatedly all along the route about Tennessee and Louisiana “back in da day” stories.

Nice, nice, nice to run into Jesse again after all of these years; to photograph him as he prepared to shop for red beans for some New Orleans-style red beans and rice; to capture the last vestiges of discarded Christmas trees’ beauty, as they lay on the sidewalk, snow-covered and awaiting pickup and final destruction; to photograph, as well, the nattily dressed pooch taking a stroll with its owner and canine companion that snow-blessed BK day…

And lastly, to go home and create abstract digital art of the bush bath makings and the never-to-be seen again discarded Christmas trees. (Hope you’ll mosey over asap to view my gallery of digital abstracts)  (The abstracts in the pic above are: digital art of my “bush bath”–directly above our canine friend  as well as an abstract of the discarded holiday trees, positioned next to the Jesse pic;  the “Pretend It’s Still Christmas” capture is of a neighborhood bakery’s enticement that day to try its eggnog cheesecake–and oh yes, the star is from my snowflake sweater–special attire for just such cityscene winter times.)

But you know what, I’m not going to talk “a whit longer” about this snowy BK day cultural experience in this blog; you can hear the accompanying story-sharing on my brand-new Ancestral Storyteller podcast right there on iTunes, including a bit more about the griot (storyteller)-blues man reunion.

And if you want to see why I love my brother-buddy, Jesse’s throw-down blues, then can catch one of his e-performances right there on the YouTube “stage.” Yeah, “Down Home Blues!” Enjoy to the max.

 


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