I understand all about winter. After all, I’ve lived through 60 of them so far. Winter by definition is supposed to cold with snow piling up in ever increasing mounds along the driveway and sidewalks. Subzero temperatures are to be expected. Winter is harsh in its sometimes beauty. But knowing all that, and appreciating the qualities and hardship winter brings, doesn’t mean I have to like it.
This winter season has been like a dull recurrent headache. Maybe even as debilitating as a dull recurrent toothache. It just won’t seem to go away. Normally in this season of discontent we can expect a few days of nearly balmy weather—temps that rise to the 40’s—that make coping with the next onslaught of snow, wind, and cold more manageable. In those times, the accumulated piles of gray, dingy snow in the gutters melts away, showing the promise of grass underneath. There is hope then. But so far this winter season, when we have been tantalized by a few days of melting snow, we have been hammered the next day with a new and heavier snowfall that wiped away any hope of spring.
Last week at this time we got nearly ten inches of snow. Yesterday it rained intermittently all day. Today they are predicting 10 or more inches of snow by tomorrow morning. What did we do to deserve this pounding? I’ve been a good boy for the most part, so it can’t be all my fault. I am running out of room to put the snow along the walkways and driveway. The snowplower that we have come to do the heavy lifting is shrinking the size of the driveway with each new appearance. The pile he has accumulated at the end of the driveway soars to a height of 8’ or more in places. It will be mid-May before we see the last of that.
I know it is dull and boring to dwell on the weather. After all, we can’t do anything about it anyway. But sometimes it makes it easier to cope when all the griping and pissing and moaning about it brings us all together in common suffering. So for those of you living willingly in the snowbelt and frozen northern climes, I feel your pain. Hang in there, this will end soon and real life can begin anew with sunshine and benevolent warm breezes and green grass and trees with leaves on them. For those of you living in warm places who don’t have to put up with the cold and snow and windchills that make polar bears wince, I say just wait until the next earthquake sends you sliding into the ocean, the next hurricane drowns you in saltwater, the next mudslide rearranges your backyard landscape, or the next wildfire roasts your weenies, then come and tell me I‘m crazy for living here.
I guess a little bit of snow and cold isn’t so bad after all.