Monday, November 19, 2018

Winter in my bones

I dragged out the snow shovels in a surly mood.  Now I understood why old people moved to Florida or Arizona.  It wasn't even that cold yet and I couldn't get warm.  I felt chilled to the bone.

I know people who love winter.  They should live in the polar regions, because they dislike the heat and rejoice at the first snowfall.  Those people aren't me.

I have a complicated relationship with winter at best.  I know it's the price I pay for living in a mountain town where the nearby peaks still have glaciers.  Sometimes winter and I get along okay, especially on bluebird days where the snow is all sparkly.  Other times when it's gray and gloomy and the roads are covered in ice, I think of the winter I spent in Hawaii and wonder what I was thinking to leave.

One of my neighbors hardly ever comes outside, even in summer.  I see her sometimes walking her dog to the mailbox, but most of the time she is indoors.  In winter, I go for weeks without seeing her.  Her car won't move out of her carport.  If she enjoys being inside, I won't judge. But that won't be me.

So I buy a ski pass, and find my snowshoes in the garage.  I look for northern lights while I sit in the hot tub.  And yesterday I hiked to a lake in the mountains, one that I love but avoid in the summer due to crowds.

It was about 20 degrees.  The trail only had a skiff of snow and ice, and the lake was surprisingly not yet frozen.  A few people were there, better prepared than I was with hot drinks and blankets.  The cliffs around the lake looked beautiful with a dusting of snow.  It was a completely different place than it was in the summer.

I will always love summer more than winter.  I love just going outside, without having to prep for it with mittens, hats, snow tires, and everything else that goes along with it.  I love a summer trail that is alive with flowers and birds.  But I've learned to live with winter, and I'll get along with this one too.  At times I'll even like it.



9 comments:

  1. Is it harder to get outside when winter first hits, versus later in the season, when you're more used to the cold? We have been really cold here and hibernation has been looking good...but I actually ran a bunch of errands today, wore my jacket, and survived, LOL.

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    1. The beginning is the worst! Today's temps seem really cold, but when March comes they will seem warm.

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  2. You’ll ‘toughen up’ to the winter temps...and soon be used to all the paraphernalia that goes with winter....when summer hits you’ll feel naked without all the extra clothes!

    What gets me most is the infernal darkness in the evenings!!!

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  3. I do love winter, but where I live I'm lucky and only have to deal with it when I travel to the mountains. If I had to shovel snow and scrape car windows on a daily basis, I might think differently.

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    1. I think that's perfect. Snow in the mountains and not in the valley.

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  4. I'd have to agree that winter is kind of a love/hate thing for me. But I kind of changed my mind after last February when I traveled to Alabama to run a race. It was gross--70 degrees and 90% humidity. When I returned to Chicago in all it's frozen glory, I was never so appreciative of winter. It felt good.

    If only it lasted just a few months. That would be better.

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  5. And here also. It has started early...snow, snow and more. The transition is the hardest, and less options out of doors. But as L. says, it does keep down the riff-raff. We are overrun in summer and not so much in winter. Get out the Yooper Scoop! and enjoy Big Mountain when it opens.

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