If you live in the East Coast or the Midwest, chances are you're looking out your window at a mound of (hopefully melting) snow. For those of us in the colder parts of North America, snow is a part of life. Whether its 3 centimeters or 30, there's no way we're missing school or work because of a cold snap.
Well, this wasn't the case in Rome, Italy. The Mediterranean city is used to warm, summery temperatures and residents are often seen wearing shorts all year round. That is, until this year.
Due to a cold weather phenomenon called the Beast from the East, the normally balmy city recently experienced its first snowfall in six years. Although Italians only had 10 centimeters dumped on them, it was enough to bring the entire city to a standstill.
Schools, parks and cemeteries were closed down. Public transportation was delayed for hours while everyone from salary workers to priests streamed outdoors to experience the miracle.
The images of Roman ruins covered in frost and snow are causing residents and tourists to swoon at the beauty of the Eternal City. Adriana Di Carlo, an Italian civil servant said she went to work on Monday, but mentioned many of her colleagues did not.
She was also affected by the transport delays but did not seem to mind because she was so excited about seeing the snow. "It's a spectacle," she said, "Enchanting, surreal."
Perhaps the excitement the Italians are feeling about the rare snowfall will cause us to appreciate having to trudge through 30 centimeters of the fluffy stuff next winter. But somehow I doubt it.