Cold such as this defies description. You can’t see it or imagine it or protect yourself from it.
You want the ugly particulars? Fine, the temperature is 9 degrees Fahrenheit with a stiff 18 mph wind barreling out of the north. Did I mention it’s snowing? It is, it’s snowing. Hard. So the wind is driving billions of sharp, icy, stinging snowflakes into any exposed skin. It’s snow as shrapnel. I promise you, this weather is brutal and things’re only going to get worse.
Temperatures are expected to drop well below zero (18 degrees below to be precise) with “dangerous” wind chills in the -45 range, where they’ll stay awhile. Schools are closed until Wednesday, the library, too. But I’m expected to show up for work promptly at 8am. My car’s out there somewhere, buried under a thick, heavy mountain of snow. Maybe that will act as insulation against the wind. Who knows? I’ll need the key and a miracle to get it started in the morning.
Over the course of the day I’ve seen, maybe, half a dozen people outside. On foot. Those people are:
A) out of cigarettes
B) out of their minds
C) all of the above
The ones I’m worried about are the animals. Last night I spotted a bunny camped out under a picnic table in the yard. It was hunched into a tight, round ball of fur. What will happen to him and his friends? The birds and squirrels and chipmunks and foxes and deer? I wish I could invite them for a sleepover.
Chin up. This won’t last forever. The cold air will begin a slow retreat on Wednesday. By week’s end we’ll be back in the 30s. In the meantime, I’ve been wondering; where’s a tropical vortex? Why don’t we have one of those?
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