The man-made canyons of Manhattan are muffled and quiet as an expected five inches of December snow begins to fall. Icy crystals crunch beneath the leather boots of the lone pedestrian as he trudges his way home from the Evening World. Great flakes dampen his eyes and cast a fog along the street, pierced only by the streetlamps and the leaking light from the heavily draped windows on this finger-numbing night.
There is an introspective incidence that may occur in a snowstorm when a man walks alone. If one allows himself to dwell, such would be a time that insidious self examination may arise. He is disappointed that he is not more advanced in his career at this point. After all, he had turned thirty years old just days ago, and is beginning to feel mortal. A large and healthy man, a previous marriage with the loss of his wife in childbirth wreaked confusion and fear upon his very soul, he dared not dwell on it. No. He steels himself and is determined to work harder and faster and smarter than any other writer at the newspaper. The fear of failure and poverty positively drive him, and presently his only consolation is that of his beautiful and talented young wife. Pressing his hat lower, and lifting his coat collar against the light chill wind, he presses on in anticipation. He finds, despite the weariness and fear, the raw beauty of this winter night to be deliriously exciting.
The fifth floor walkup apartment at 167 West 80th Street is aglow in the splendor of the Christmas season, the result of his remarkable spouse. She has spent every penny of his recent paycheck to decorate for the first Christmas the young couple is to spend in their very own apartment. She understands that it is his heart’s desire to spend the holidays at his boyhood home in the foothills of the Ramapo, near the dam along the flowing river that widens into a lake, and she reasons that would and should happen… in time. She loves her husband’s family, but now is a time to establish their own traditions. A time to celebrate their recent marriage and a time to introduce the hard working newspaperman to the people that she knows and loves best; the musicians, playwrights, poets, and performers, her friends from the conservatory.