I’ve lived in
What it comes down to is that I’ll always be a canker in the oyster that is
Winter usually seems to me to be almost offensively overdone up here. Like a thirteen-year-old who just doesn’t know when to stop. It just goes on and on and on and on… Really? We’re going to top out at a whopping 8 degrees today? You don’t think you made that point last week when we didn’t get above 15 degrees? Really? We need another 2 feet of snow? Are you sure those last 3 blizzards didn’t really convey the basic message???? Oh, here we go. A giant coating of ice. Like we didn’t all see the news this week. You did this in
Winter and I get along like a cat in a bath. Picture me: screeching, lost to reason, claws out, ears back, shoulders up, occasionally swearing, swiping at anything within reach, hissing and wailing like a banshee. That’s my inner self every single day that is below 40 degrees. I just don’t like being cold. And although it is irrational to feel this way, I take it personally. I resent being cold. Winters in
Long-johns. Sigh. Even the concept can make me weary. But if I didn’t wear long-johns all winter long I’d be a freeze-dried little mackerel, believe me. And it doesn’t matter that I’ve found the super thin kind, made of 100% silk. There is simply no way to feel even one speck of glamour while wearing long-johns. You may be walking along in your fab new boots, feeling all stride-y and
Okay, without being too Pollyanna about it, I will name two things I do like about winter: 1) The gorgeous white hush of a brand new snowfall. It’s breathtaking. If only the snow fairies would come out at night and scrape all the sidewalks clear. Then it would be perfect. 2) Soups and stews. I do love a good warm bowl of winter-defying yumminess. The contrast between the warm comfort of what I’m eating, and the iciness outside adds a delicious piquancy to the meal. Mmmm.
Despite my years of winter experience, however, there are still a few mysteries I have yet to solve. If you know the answer, please let me know. These questions pop up in November every year and I can only scratch my head and wonder. I’ve never yet figured them out.
1) Coats. Where on earth do the women of
2) Noses. Apparently my little
3) Personal thermostats. Speaking of mystified. When I go outside on any day that is colder than 35 degrees, I spend a certain amount of time right before my grand exit going through a series of motions I call ‘rugging up.’ I put on my big coat. I put on my hat. I put on my gloves, making sure to tuck the sleeves of what I’m wearing inside the cuffs of the gloves, and the cuffs of the gloves inside the sleeves of my coat. Then I wrap a scarf around the place where my neck can usually be found, in case I need to hunker down like a turtle to protect my face from the wind. THEN I’m ready to head out. THEN is also usually when I remember something important like an address I need to write down or something I need to put away before I go. Then I get all hot and sweaty inside my coat because what I’m wearing is definitely over-the-top for indoor temperatures. Once I get to my destination (usually the subway station) I take it all off. Hat, scarf and gloves go in my bag. Coat gets unbuttoned. When I get on the train I take my coat off and hold it. Here’s the mystery: I AM THE ONLY PERSON WHO DOES THIS. Every single other person on my crowded train car every single morning – we’re talking several hundred people – keeps it all on. Oh, they may swipe off their hats and gloves, but they leave scarves around their necks, and rarely bother to unbutton their coats. I am bewildered. Aren’t they turning into disgusting sweat pigs in there? I would be. Maybe locals have fabulously fine-tuned personal thermostats that allow them to wear 4 inches of protective outerwear while inside and not get overheated. It sounds so improbable, doesn’t it?
Anyway. We are expecting winter to arrive on the express about today, the same howler that bowled through the middle of the country a few days ago, only slightly less fearsome. Gotta go get out my big ugly coat and a pocketful of Kleenex. I’m already wearing my long-johns.