Posted by: Matthew Fox | February 22, 2010

White Wonderful World

The streets of Philadelphia were completely white starting February 6th.  On this occasion, the snow accumulated on the ground and the city was brought to a standstill.  Travel was impossible.  Businesses and many public agencies didn’t open.  Many schools were closed.  For once, the University of Pennsylvania was among them.

A snow day is a child’s dream and the child in me was ecstatic.  I can’t remember the last time I was up to date on my class work and a class-free day would provide me a chance to attempt to do that.  I didn’t plan on going out in the snow, but there was something about that day that brought many of Penn’s students outside on the campus grounds.  At least to me, a sense of community appeared to materialize out of nothing.

Although the school was closed to allow affiliates to stay warm and safe indoors, Penn students flocked to take part in the snow activities.  As the snow stuck to the ground and rapidly piled inch upon inch, there was no shortage of white fodder for winter events.  Multi-person snowball fights took place both in the Quad and Hamilton Square.  Students bodyboarded down the bridge connecting 37th and 38th street on Locust Walk, for the bridge could have been an easy stand in for a snow-covered hill.  Students also took part in snow men building contests, several of which were sanctioned by the school.

In the end, I managed to get little of my work done.  However, the day off allowed me time out from my stress and the ability to take part in Penn-community activities.  There is much more to college life than just academic work.  The great blizzard of 2010 allowed me to realize that.  Although the piles of snow are now half melted, I and many others will always have the memories of snow-life at Penn.



  1. Nice reflection Matthew. Thanks for sharing it.

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