Carpe Diem (Seize the day) and Winnie the Pooh (named after Winnipeg - often referred to as "Winter-peg") make up the real-life tattoo on our snow nymph's leg - very appropriate for the personification of a Canadian Winter.

Winter does have a beauty of its own, and many of us really do seize the day. (Not me - I actually want to be reincarnated AS A BEAR so that I can hibernate.) We (others) go skiing, snow boarding, skating, tobogganing, and play hockey, watch hockey, and talk hockey. We celebrate with festivals, and say things like "Cold enough for ya?", and "My car didn't start, I should have plugged it in, eh."

In this version of "Heart of Snow", a beautiful snow nymph is joined by that great symbol of the north, the polar bear. And not just any bear! Debbie, who makes her home at the Winnipeg zoo, has been recognized by Guinness World Records as the oldest living polar bear. Now over 40 years old, Debbie was born on an arctic island in Russia and was sent as an orphan to the Tillberg Zoo, in the Netherlands. She arrived in Winnipeg on September 6, 1967.

Debbie died Monday, November 17, 2008

I assembled the rest of "Winter" from photos of an ice-jam on the Kicking Horse River and the mountains that surround Golden, BC.

So, two bears from Winnipeg and a snow nymph from the Canadians Rockies - now that's Winter - eh!

Inspired by Heart of Snow
Edward Robert Hughes


How small a tooth hath mined the season's heart!
How cold a touch hath set the wood on fire,
Until it blazes like a costly pyre
Built for some Ganges emperor, old and swart,
Soul-sped on clouds of incense! Whose the art
That webs the streams, each morn, with silver wire,
Delicate as the tension of a lyre,--
Whose falchion pries the chest-nut burr apart?
It is the Frost, a rude and Gothic sprite,
Who doth unbuild the Summer's palaced wealth,
And puts her dear loves all to sword or flight;
Yet in the hushed, unmindful winter's night
The spoiler builds again with jealous stealth,
And set a mimic garden, cold and bright.

Edith Matilda Thomas

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