This snow fort sits on the corner of the mall, in front of the Raymond H. Fogler library. The University of Maine Screaming Black Bears Pep Band discovered it after returning from a performance for a basketball game at the Cross Insurance Center one Sunday afternoon. Who took the time to build it? No one knew. Someone took advantage of the heavy snowfall in the past week to build a fortress against the elements, with the elements. // The structure appeared to begin as the remnants of the plowing effort. The resulting pile needed to be hollowed out. The doorway was small and low to the ground, and the floor had turned to ice. Entering and exiting the fort without hurting yourself requires squatting low and propping your elbows against either side of the cramped tunnel while walking. The fort itself was small, and the opening in the top provided a 360° view of the mall, from the library to the gym. Layered snow bricks travel up the side walls of the structure. Whoever built this, individual or group, put plenty of effort into its creation. The pep band took the time to appreciate the craftsmanship of the structure, a childlike snow fort with adult handiwork, before walking their separate ways. // The following Wednesday, students pass by the fort on their way to class, treating it as nothing more than part of the background. Any novelty this snow fort had has worn away. With the snow slowly melting, the bricks begin to lose their definition, and become a single mass of snow and dirt. Any traction in the tunnel floor is lost as the ground becomes nothing but a solid sheet of ice. Snow melting as winter becomes spring is inevitable, but spring is not the only time where a reminder to "stop and smell the roses" would be welcome.

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