Now Embracing Winter Warmly
Winter is a weather reality for most of us who live in North America. While the extremes and severity of said weather vary, depending on the latitudinal coordinate where you reside, it amazes me how much more people complain these days about the cold, snow and even road conditions. Maybe this form of amnesia about the verisimilitude of winter’s ways is tied to our hubris, born from the post-modern belief that technology trumps everything else, including weather. It might also be fueled by local media outlets, in their newfound quest to entertain, rather than educate. Nothing makes greater theater than a winter storm. From the opening strains of the dark and sinister “storm center” music, to incessant live reports from the turnpike, the airport and other locations out and about. Does it ever occur to anyone, anymore, that it snows in the winter? I’ve been a resident of the Northeastern United Stated for most of my 45 years. I remember the significant snows of the late 1960s and early 1970s. It was 1978, in fact, when New England experienced one of her most severe winter storms. This “storm of the century” brought continuous snow for 33 hours, three times the duration of your typical Northeaster. Over 3,500 cars had to be abandoned on highways and interstates, in and around Boston. Numerous coastal homes along the New England shoreline, and as far south as Long Island, washed into the sea. In the 1980s, I left the parochial ways of New England and made my way to the Midwest, settling along the shores of Lake Michigan, living in northwest Indiana during that time. I had no idea that this region, like other places tucked up tight to one of the Great Lakes, can experience lake effect snows and storms that rival anything New England can dish out, in the way of winter wantonness. One particular storm that occurred in 1984, brought snow and strong winds, causing whiteouts and drifting snow piled 12-15 feet high. As a result,...
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