This story is about two characters, Miss Giau a Vietnamese woman who works at a restaurant and Mr. Miss Giau tells us her story of how Mr. Cohen and her were brought together. Through their conversations they find something in common, their fear of Snow. Many of the images symbolize that snow is a character trait between them.
Miss. Giau has a fear of snow, simply because she had never seen it. She comes from a tropical country and settled for some time in St. Louis, Missouri, just in time for a snowfall. It scared her to see everything buried underneath a white sheet and identifies herself as being buried alive. .
Mr. Cohen has a fear of snow because it reminds him of his father's death; it was snowing the day he died in Poland. Both Giau and Cohen make a connection between death and snow.
They see snow as a cold white sheet, symbolizing death, as the sheet that covers you when you die. Miss. Giau states, "I went to sleep and there was only a gray afternoon, a thin little rain, like a mist I had no idea things could change like that. I woke and everything was covered, and I was terrified" (pg. 217). The woman's connection between snow and death can also symbolize that she is aging and growing closer to death and has found no one to spend her life with and probably fears dying alone. .
In the case of Ms. Giau, snow may also be a symbol of purity. She is neither married nor does she have children. For Mr. Cohen snow may be a symbolization of the cold, lonely world he lives in: widowed and no longer with children.
It came to be that their fear of something so simple as snow on the ground is what has brought them together. Their sense of loneliness is the key to both their fears and their personality traits. .