I started this blog in the summer and remember thinking that when November and December came around, I’d write a post a week about the weather. It’s typically all I talk about once the weather gets cold (see above). It’s my tenth winter in Vermont and I’m not used to it in the least.
But this hasn’t been a typical winter! We’ve had hardly any snow and although there have been some cold days, there have also been plenty of days in the 30s and even the 40s. I know that friends who ski and skate are missing the normal piles of snow and frigid air. But for me: what a delight! I usually feel like I’m in deep hibernation by now: three layers of fleece, long underwear at all times, and only going out when bundled fiercely against the cold. It wears me down. This year, at least so far, I still feel like a person alive in the world.
It’s not the occasional below zero day that gets me down about winter in New England. It’s the relentless freezing air and the feeling that I can’t both relax my shoulders and be outside at the same time for three months at a time. Or more. I like a big snow, but I also like to be able to walk down the sidewalk without having my feet constantly threatening to slide out from under me. And if you know me, you know I need to take that threat seriously. This year there’s more bare sidewalk than ice, thank god. A little cool sprinkled in with the cold really helps.
The travel I’m doing is helping a little bit as well. It was 50 degrees in Pittsburgh today and we walked over the river for lunch downtown (dahntahn, is how it sounds here). There’s a little bit of melting snow in the shade, but 50 is not just warmer than usual, it’s downright tropical for January. I love the feeling of being able to smell the air and not just the cold.
Of course I know full well that I’m jinxing myself by bringing this up. Now that I’ve said, “winter isn’t so bad this year,” we’ll get three blizzards in a row and no melt until May. But since I’m thinking about it constantly anyway, I guess there’s no reason not to write it down. I’m loving this winter-ish weather. Hope it lasts until what passes for spring!