It's been only a few days since those of us here in Gordon County experienced winter temperatures that hadn't been seen since Hector was a pup, or at least in the past 20 years. I don't know about you, but I was significantly younger the last time wind-chill factors were in negative double digits. It didn't help my feelings any that the weather prognosticators were calling for minus-36 degrees in some parts of Georgia. Granted, it didn't get that cold here in northwest Georgia, but the fact that such lows could be possible in any part of this state was mind-blowing.
Just how cold those temperatures are was brought home to me when I took the family wheels in for a pro-active check of the coolant system. The verdict came back that I was protected as long as it didn't get any colder than 143 degrees below zero. A few years back, I would have laughed about how impossible it was even to contemplate such frigid conditions.
Suddenly, the projected low in regions within easy driving distance of Calhoun was only a few degrees shy of my radiator's level of protection.
Winter isn't what it once was. Or maybe I'm just older than I used to be. Either way, the word "cold" doesn't begin to describe what getting from December to late March is like these days. Staying warm takes on all new dimensions, not to mention greatly increased heating bills. Global warming, you ask? I'm not smart enough to make that call. I'm doing good to figure out which direction to unscrew the lid on the pickle jar. All I know for sure is that it is what it is.
The biggest complaint I've got is that if we're gonna have to deal with those icy mercury readings, couldn't we at least have the white stuff to go with them?
I'll admit it: I'm a sucker for snow. While it's always magic to wake up and find an unexpected snowfall blanketing the world outside my door, I get even more pleasure from watching that snow fall. There's just something about the seemingly non-stop shower of white bits of fluff that is beyond description. Watching those individual flakes marry into a blanket of pristine whiteness causes my breath to catch in my chest, kind of like a merger of Norman Rockwell and Thomas Kinkade.
I can almost hear the protests building out there now, so let me cut to the chase and admit that if I had to live in a region where it snows in October and continues to snow through April, I might fall out of love with the white stuff. But I don't live "up north", and we don't get snow here that often. Not real deep, honest-to-goodness blankets of snow. And since we live where the natural winter landscape color is brown and green, I can indulge my love affair with snowy weather. When winter weather blankets the scenery with visions of cotton batting, and a covering of white muffles the everyday sounds of hectic life, I get a thrill beyond words.
If we've got to pay the higher heating bills and put on multiple layers of clothes just to go to the mailbox, we ought to at least be able to slog through the snow as a reward.
Weather gurus, are you listening? I'm waiting for snow.
Only could I have a little advance warning? There's nothing worse than a fantastic snowfall without hot chocolate and homemade chili to go along with it!