Thursday, January 25, 2007

The Woes of Winter Warming

I'm sure the planet, overall, as a ball with summer down under, is still cooking with gas, suffering it's mercurial meltdown. But anecdotally, that meltdown is mercurial. It comes and goes, and when it's really cold outside we think, in our grade school brains, that things are not as bad as they seem, not as bad as those bad boy greenies tell us things are. But hey, me, I'm glad to have some real winter, for a change.

I am a rather migratory bird of late. For years, more or less, I have headed north in the summer and south in the winter, south meaning back to my meager nest in Texas. But that doesn't mean I like 80 degree days in the winter. I find that about as gruesome as humid 95 degree days in the summer.

I do want winter to be winter, even if I don't have glaciers calving outside my windows. A good stretch of 25-45 degree weather does the soul some good. I feel energized by that sort of cold. Too bad it's sometimes that cold INSIDE my uninsulated house that acts like a sieve for drafts and cold-to-the-bone-under-the-covers sorts of days, especially if they are gray as well.

I have a few pathetic little electric heaters that I have to point at my ankles to get warm, and I have a fireplace, which is, as we all know, an aesthetically priceless but vastly, suckingly impractical way to heat a room, much less a house. The kitchen is like Siberia. I keep the door closed and just let it be the deep freeze. I don't have to worry about refrigerating anything, I can just leave the leftovers and the yogurt on the counter. Temp: a bit cooler than inside the fridge.

When there's a "cold snap" of winter down here, I can see my breath in the lamp light as I read. I am getting good at bucking up and not noticing quite so often how much I am shivering. It's a game. It's like winter camp. Outdoors and in.

Well, the last few weeks were like this, and with my frosty breath inside and crunchy layers of snow and ice outside, I was settling in to my hobby. But today, today back came the warm snap, bold and blue and bright, very bright. Lots of squinting and some smiles. Yes, I do crave the sun, especially in winter, so I better get out there and soak some up -- for myself and for those not so lucky.

But to the planet: just don't get carried away with that sauna in January stuff. I don't need those mercurial swings above 80 until mid-March, thanks.


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