Writing Prompt: “At the stroke of midnight on January 1st, 2020, the first snow of the new year and the new decade fell. And it never stopped.”
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!
People cheered as the ball drop and the clock struck midnight. We were officially done with 2019 and in the year of 2020. People kissed their significant others. They clinked champagne flutes together and dreamed of what the new year would bring. What could we expect from the 2020s?
As the crowds of people rejoiced, small flakes of snow began falling from the sky. It was a New Year’s Eve miracle which seemed to be happening all over the world. It was a phenomenon happening from New Zealand and Australia all a way across the globe. As each time zone hit midnight and started the new year, snow began to fall.
“Ringing in the new year with some snow!” The New Year’s Eve Host said to the camera as they cut away from the celebrations.
What started with celebration quickly became concern. Not only did places in the world experiencing winter get days of steady snow, but places in the southern hemisphere that would normally be celebrating summer were also getting snowfall. Only a few days into the new year and some tropical places and countries among the equator received a record amount of snowfall. Small, white flakes continued to fall and fall without any hope in sight. Some people just thought it was another winter. They lived in cold places that got snow. No big deal. However this snow continued to fall and pile up all over the world.
Southern states like Georgia and Mississippi declared states of emergency as the fallen snow coated streets and highways with no way to remove it. People in northern states like Wisconsin and Minnesota laughed. They had lived through horrible winters and this was nothing.
Or so they thought.
The next few weeks brought more and more snow with chilling temperatures. States of emergencies spread as the winter weather grew worse. The world became panicked as the snow continued to fall without any sign of slowing down. It just kept piling up with nowhere to put it. Some towns become isolated as any way in and out were completely cut off which is a fate that many towns and even major cities would soon experience.
Throughout it all it seemed like a slow moving plague which there was almost nothing we could do. We could see it coming, but we were helpless. This wasn’t like a fast moving tornado or a category five hurricane. It wasn’t a destructive force that hit us all at once. It was a slow death, almost beautiful in a strange way.
In the following weeks, the snowfall grew to be a world-wide epidemic. Snow fall records were broken across the globe and places that dealt with snow were now left stranded. The power grid fell and people were stranded in the dark and in the snow. This was a period of survival where neighbors turned on neighbors for a bit of canned food or a gas can for a generator. The snowplows stopped plowing snow. The lights would not come back on. The government was not coming for you. It was just you versus the others all trying to survive, but the real enemy was the snow.
Many people succumb not only to the cold or lack of resources, but also the mentality that came with the constant snow. Some people believed that this was some kind of apocalyptic event brought on by the wrath of God. Maybe God had promised to never flood the Earth, but this was a cleansing with righteous snow. Others turned to climate and nature. This was Earth’s way of fighting back. This was our punishment for pollution, destroying the ozone layer, and denying climate change. The Earth brought us the next ice age and we were not meant to survive it.
No matter the cause, the constant snowfall lead people to think of survival in different ways. Some had predicted some kind of world-ending event and were hunkered down in their survival bunkers surrounded by canned food and dry packets. The rest of the world would die cold and hungry, but they could wait it out. One day the snow would stop and they would emerge from their holes victorious, ready to remold the world in their image. Others just lived day to day the best they could, praying that the snow would end. Scavengers that would make their way through the snow to find any supplies left to in stores, warehouses, and even abandoned homes. Many structures collapsed under the weight that the snow added to rooftops, but they made due with what they had.
Others took a very different approach. They embraced the cold. Let it consume them. They knew this was the end and that survival was trivial. I’ve heard that in the final stages of hypothermia, people will remove their clothes despite the fact that they are extremely cold. They knowing expose themselves to the cold and die instead of seeking warmth. This was the final stage for some. The snow would not end so you might as well go out on your own terms.
Days. Weeks. Months. All of it blends together when the snow is stuck behind the clouds. I’m not sure how long people held out hope. Maybe some thought that Spring would come and finally, the snow would stop. It would take time to recover, but it recovery would come. The snow would stop. It had to, right?
This unnatural snowfall which surrounded the globe had come and it was not finished. This endless snow had come and had devastated everyone. Maybe that’s what bothered me about this the most. They say that rain is the great equalizer, but this snow took it to another level. It just fell and we were left drowning in it. It did not care. It did not show remorse but it also did not show vengeance. It just didn’t care. It was snow. It was heartless and cold.
It’s now 2021. I know it has been some time since I’ve given any update, but nothing has changed. A year of constant snowfall without any signs of stopping. I cannot tell you how much of it is outside. Any sense of normalcy is gone. The snow is now normal. This is all that is left. No signs of human. No signs of life. Just snow. Snow. Snow.
Maybe the snow will stop one day. Maybe what’s left of humanity will recover.
I will not see that day; however.
This will be my last…my last words. The snow has consumed everything and now it consumes my will to live. My will to continue.
The hypothermia. It comes to me.
I will walk out into the snow.
Embrace the white death. Embrace the endless snow.
If you read my words then I guess the snow has stopped or you are just as crazy as me, wandering the snow hoping that there will be some kind of way to stop it.
Well salvation is not here.
Header Photo Credit to Kyodo News
Writing Prompt submitted to r/WritingPrompts by u/IceGalaxyGoddess