delights. Why should it delight? The holiday season perhaps comes in
part from the travails of rural life when the cold weather would force
people indoors to eat the birds that wouldn’t survive the winter. They
transformed hardship and suffering into delight. But snow continues to
delight us in the cities.
Perhaps it’s a version of the sublime.
Kant says the experience of a vast rolling ocean is both terrifying and
pleasurable because first we feel our physical insignificance and then
are reminded of our metaphysical freedom.
Snow delights by sublimely transforming
the cityscape. We are reminded of the awesome power of nature. Even
London, even one of the greatest, largest, most enduring cities of the
world can be blanketed in snow. We can be interrupted, convulsed as a
city. We change our lives for a time: we calculate journeys differently,
each turn of the road reveals a landscape made unrecognisable, the
light is suddenly strange. Our bodies, our very bodies are contorted as
we plant our feet differently, feeling unfamiliar strains as our legs
tense to stay upright.
But the city renders snow pleasurably sublime because snow, finally, can be incorporated into the city as decoration.