When I woke up yesterday, it was 6º below zero. I opened the drapes and looked out on chimneys and floaty plumes of steam, crusty snow, stark, black trees with arms raised skyward in silent supplication — in other words, a bleak tableau.
Every morning is the same, nothing changes, winter barrels on unabated. And, through no small coincidence, that’s what I resemble, a tall, waddling barrel in my 60 pounds of heavy clothes. It is late January, for those of you keeping track, and this is the midwest, so the weather isn’t completely unexpected. What’s surprising is the unrelenting severity, the endless parade of gray gloom and piercing cold days. Routine chores can take a perilous turn in these conditions. Shoot, just going out with the dog puts our lives at risk, hers and mine. Exposed skin can freeze in seconds, you know. Worse yet, what if we fell and couldn’t get up? That’s always a possibility.
Meteorologists yatter on about vortexes and jet streams, arctic this and polar that and snow accumulations, when all I want to know is when will winter ever end. When will spring bust out all over me? They don’t know. Spring’s never mentioned, just advisories and warnings and preparedness advice. Well, forget them. In my little world, spring begins on March 1st, rain or shine. Or snow or sleet or flipping avalanche, it doesn’t matter. Only 32 days remain until spring comes to whirly world.
In the interim, however, I’m implementing a brand new policy called hibernation. I’m not going out there. I’m staying in where it’s warm. Come on, who wants to grapple with winter? I don’t. You don’t. No one does. So why do we? Scraping windshields sucks. Big, flappy coats suck. Wind sucks. Runny noses suck. Everything sucks except hot cocoa and grilled cheeses. So those are my plans, cocoa and grilled cheese. Screw winter and the nasty vortex it rode in on.
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