Cold is no joke

posted by Jeff | Thursday, January 4, 2018, 9:00 PM | comments: 0

We're into our fifth winter now in Central Florida, and we haven't had a really crappy cold spell since the first year. The last few days have been pretty terrible, with 100% cloudy days, rain, high winds, and then starting last night, the temperatures bottoming out in the low 30's. Naturally, I can have a solid bitch/moan about this, and everything is back to normal within a few days. I get to see the dynamics of a smart thermostat and a heat pump system in action, which appeals to my nerdistic side. I'll be having lunch outside again within a few days, and probably open the windows.

That said, I've noticed through the magic of the social media that people complain about winter, or express extreme shock, every year. And mind you, that's people who grew up in the Midwest, so it's not like they've never seen it before. Part of this, I think, is some amount of rightful awe at weather and what it can do. Extreme weather is impressive because the only thing you can really do is shelter from it. Even if it is routine, I'm not sure it can be less impressive.

I also notice that when people complain about it, it doesn't seem to occur to them that they can choose to get away from it. I admit, it took me about a decade and a half of adulthood, instigated by all kinds of life-chaos, to realize it, but you know, you don't have to live in a crappy winter location. When I stop and think of a childhood of boots and layered clothing for school, or walking through downtown Cleveland in the snow from parking to work, or having to fire up the damn snow blower just so I can leave the house... none of that is fun. Those aren't good memories. I sucked it up because it was my situation at the time, but unless someone intends to double triple my salary, I'm in no hurry to go back to something like that. No thanks.

I was already aware of this living in Seattle, and it's amazing how the threshold for snow affects your entire weather m.o. The PNW is not a place of climate extremes, with monthly average highs covering only a 28 degree span, and snow is rare until you get to higher elevations. Cleveland spans 49 degrees, it rains more annually, and that's not even counting the snowfall. The November to January drizzle around the Puget Sound can be kind of crappy at times, but it doesn't exclude sun or require you to shovel white stuff the way Cleveland does for an even longer period.

So yeah, making this choice, to live here, was among the best adult decisions I've ever made. Y'all keep visiting and spending money here on vacation, but ask yourself what's really preventing you from living here. If you insist that you like seasons and whatever, then don't act surprised the next time it's cold and snowing where you live. I will absolutely remind you of your love for seasons!


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