It’s mid-March, which means one thing in Jodi-world: the END of my patience for winter. I love the onset of winter in New England – that first snowstorm is magical, and maybe even the 2nd one, too. I enjoy the challenge of bundling up to get my outside time in. Sadie loves the snow and doesn’t care about the cold. And winter gear is awesome.
But when it’s the middle of March, and we just had a foot of snow dumped on us, followed by freezing rain that has hardened the snow into cement…and that storm is followed by freezing winds and ice-covered sidewalks just waiting to dump me on my ass?
Yeah, that part of winter I’m done with. This is when I start to say “why do I live here again?” Luckily, I have a magical trip to the Utah desert coming up in two weeks, so that will be a nice antidote to the cold. (PS, you’ve been warned – there will be multiple blog posts about canyons and red rocks and whatnot. I’m guaranteeing it.)
And, despite my grousing, I’m not without gratitude. I mean, watching my dog bite and frolic in the snow is delightful. Hiding bad hair with hats, and double chins with scarves…these are bonuses of the winter variety.
And in truth, when one has the right gear, there is wonder to be found. Like last night, where the tread on my hiking boots, normally used to keep me from falling off of mountainsides, allowed Sadie and I to take a walk on TOP of the snow layer, leaving no footprints, which was a weird and fun experience.
Or, like this past Monday, when, after an eye doctor appointment, I found myself in an unfamiliar part of town (this Orange Line gal doesn’t know what to do in Green Line territory), at the mercy of buses that were not following the posted schedules. When the bus that was supposed to come didn’t, I shrugged, zipped up my puffy warm coat, tightened my Smartwool hat on my head, donned my gloves, popped on my sunglasses, and proceeded to walk – in my sensible and warm Merrell boots – the 11 stops to the bus transfer point. It was the first night after we turned the clocks ahead, so I strolled a couple of miles while watching the sun go down behind me, erasing that layer of gold that tips the tops of buildings.
I was warm, I had new contact lenses on, and my legs felt strong. And I had a moment when I realized that I am truly a lucky and, dare I say it, privileged, person. To live where I live, in a city that values public transit (even when it doesn’t quite work right). To be able to afford really good winter outerwear. To have health care that gave me a free pair of eyeglasses, and an employer that doesn’t punish me for taking the time to get my eyes checked. And, to have two working legs that can take me anywhere, really, with the only limits being my own willingness to try (hope I remember this when descending into slot canyons in Utah).
And of course, to have heat and a roof over my head to keep me warm until glorious spring decides to show herself. Which frankly, can’t come soon enough. I mean, seriously, Mama Nature. I’ll do my best to find the good in the cold, but spring is the best time ever to be alive…so let’s get to it.