Snowfall in Collserola

Written by Lucy Brzoska

On the rare occasion it snows in Collserola, you have to be quick. It has a tendency to fade before your eyes. When I got out at Mundet metro station, I searched between the buildings for a view of the transformed hills. Along the muddy path, small translucent patches began appearing at ever more regular intervals. The picnic tables were lightly powdered. I remembered summer nights, sitting there listening to crickets and midwife toads.

Higher up, flowering gorse wore the snow like epaulettes. The spiny leaves of holly oak pierced it. Strawberry trees bowed down under it, their leaves protecting the clusters of flowers. On other January days, you can sit on these slopes in a t-shirt.

At the top, among the umbrella pines, Collserola had turned monochrome.

In the woods on the other side it still seemed to be snowing. The air was powdery as trees spilled their loads. Through the mist you could sense a wintry island reflecting distant sunlight: Montseny. Bikes, dogs, boars and people had all been up before me, but there were still clean stretches to print and make that soft crunch, which you can distinctively feel through the soles of your boots, no matter how thick.

A couple had brought their little girl to witness it all. She rolled on the snow like a husky, and repeated with deep satisfaction: “Neu! Neu! Neu!”