New York City, February 24, 2014

★★★ It took some looking, on the first few steps outside, to spot any remnants of snow. The Volkswagen camper that had sat on the block through the storms was melted clean, though still boxed in at the back corner and the street side by dirty plow-ridges. The preschooler, already late to preschool, walked slowly, admiring each passing vehicle. At West End, a plow truck was waiting at the light, its blade jutting up and out and its bed full of salt. Cold wind blew from the west and strong sun shone from the east, so strong that the parka pockets were full of warm air. Crusted garbage lined the sidewalk downtown where the snow had been. At sundown, smudges of pastel pink showed in every direction — west of course, and down the avenue, but also uptown and even off to the east, over the shoulder, in the opening of the cross street.