“Don’t pack that snow blower so far behind the rest of the machinery that you can’t get at it. You’ll need it a lot this year.”

“How can you be so sure?” Dick asked.

“Haven’t you noticed how many little yellow and white butterflies there were in the fields this fall? “ I asked him.

He grinned.

“That’s not the only sign,” I continued. “Have you noticed how tall the weeds are along the sides of the fields? Have you noticed how high the berries are located on the bushes outside our house?”

I reminded him its God’s way of providing for the birds by making the weeds taller and the berries higher so the bird feed is not buried in snow.

It’s not superstition. I don’t believe in superstition. It’s nature! It’s the same reason squash vines were unusually long this year and the onion skins were so thick.

I can still remember my dad telling us, “We’re in for lots of snow this winter. See the thick fur on the caterpillars.”

He could predict the weather by the color of the sky at sunrise or sunset and by the time of day a rainbow appeared and by the cobwebs in the air.

Predictions like this don’t come from meteorologists. They come from grandpas, uncles and rural sages who have lived through so many seasons that their instincts, memories and experiences tell them what to expect.

Dick snickered and I could tell he didn’t have a lot of faith in my method of predicting but he had to agree, it’s just as accurate as the radio.

I think he learned a few times not to rely on the radar reports of when rain will come. Next time maybe he’ll ask me.

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