I am from the Midwest. Like many people, we have a love / hate relationship with our weather. We often hate our weather but we love to talk, brag, and complain about it. It’s a source of conversation. Even if you don’t know the person, you always have something to say to them. Such as ‘Is it hot enough for you?’ or ‘Cold enough for you?’ If you know the person more intimately, you might say something like, ‘get any rain at your place?’ or ‘how much snow did you get last night?’ The weather is a nice ice breaker.
I recently visited Las Vegas. I was in heaven. The night time was my favorite. If I were a vampire I would live my eternal dead life in Vegas. I can’t explain the feeling but strolling outside at night was like walking into a warm embrace. I loved the balminess on my skin. The lights and people made the evening come alive. There was so much to see and do, I didn’t sleep much the whole time I was gone. I wanted to see everything.
Surprising, every time I talked to a local and told them how much I loved their weather. Their response was always, ‘I hate it”. How could they hate having warm nights and sunshine and blue skies every day? Sure it was hot but they didn’t have the humidity like we do. Humidity leaves a person feeling like they are sitting in a sauna with their clothes on. Vegas had the same nice weather every day I was there.
As I thought about it more, I realized I couldn’t live in Vegas. I would miss the change of seasons. What would I say to strangers in an elevator, ‘so how about that sun today?’ or ‘Do you think we’ll hit 100 again?’ I would get bored with the same thing every day. I look forward to going to my closet at the end of winter or summer and seeing clothes that I was sick of wearing, suddenly look new again. Things such as that favorite soft sweater or fleece, the fun t-shirt or hat, and of course my leggings, Packer jersey and Uggs.
Yes, I would miss the seasons but last winter just about killed me. The first sight of snowflakes are excited but when you have had your third snowiest winter in history with half of the snow falling after the first day of spring, you know first-hand what cabin fever is all about. I had a snow day in May!! Every time I would see another storm heading our way, I would turn on the DOT website for South Dakota. They have cameras on the highways and I would see the blizzards blowing through as the state shut down for the blunt of the storm. I know it was bad but I felt sorry for myself and I could look at how nasty it was somewhere else and say to myself ‘well, at least I don’t live in the Dakotas’.
I remember walking outside a few weeks after the last snow melted and feeling blessed with a perfect weather day. Why was it perfect? Well, because there was nothing special about it. The day was neither too hot nor too cold. The sky was a beautiful shade of blue, big fluffy white clouds floating by; it was the right temp with a gentle breeze blowing the leaves on the now green trees. I wanted to take off my shoes and wiggle my toes in the soft grass and damp earth. I locked that day away in my head for the next turbulent one.
Our lives are often compared to the weather. We have stormy days, gloomy days, bright days, and days that we desperately try to find the cloud with the silver lining. Yet most of our days are just ordinary, they are neither too hot nor too cold. Nothing to brag about happens. How many perfect moments pass by unnoticed in our busy lives because there are no storm warnings to alerts us to take notice?
I have a cat named Tommy. He is not a lap cat so when he recently climbed into my lap as I sat on the couch, I couldn’t move. I stayed there a long time just sitting with my cat. He purred in my lap while I pet his soft fur. Unconditional love of a pet is a perfect thing. At night, I lay in bed with my husband. He likes to watch TV and I read. Often times, he will reach to hold my hand or vice versa. I can’t help but smile. It is a simple thing but enjoying what you love with the person you love, it’s a perfect thing. I love hot chocolate. Have you ever put so much whipped cream on your hot chocolate that it ends up on the end of your nose with the first sip? Is that a perfect thing? Hello!!! You are drinking hot chocolate with enough whipped cream on it that it sticks to the end of your nose. It’s perfect and delicious!! How many perfect moments in life pass us by because there is nothing to brag, love, hate, or complain about?
I live in the Wisconsin. We just had a heat wave that lasted about a week and it broke some records going back to the 1930’s. It is like a dust bowl here. At night I go for walks and I watch more crops turn brown and wither away. The yard is filled with leaves from trees that have already gone dormant and ready for winter. It is only the first part of September but with no water, everything curls up and dies. The lawn hasn’t been mowed since early July. We had the snowiest winter, the rainiest spring, and now a dry summer. What will winter bring? More perfect days or more storms to do battle with?
Like I said, we just had a heat wave and tonight will be in the forty’s. Soon nature will dazzle us with her swan song. The leaves, those that are left, will dance in different colors and the harvests will be in abundance. I think everyone loves Fall, it is what follows that brings us down. The shorter days, freezing temperatures, and mounting snow. The people from down South will finally emerge from their homes after the sweltering heat of summer and enjoy their now perfect days. Ones that are not too cold or too hot, you know the days that nothing really happens.
However, my Southern friends, when you are standing on your porch and the smell of impending rain is in the air. If things get too cold for you, go inside, and make yourself some hot chocolate. Think about those boring days of summer. The ones in which nothing happened. The perfect days that were filled with warm, moonlight evenings, sunshine and bright blue skies. If that doesn’t make you feel better, then turn on the weather channel and think of us Northerners. You might just see another winter storm heading our way. Subzero temperatures, wind chills, and huge snow fall amounts. Grab your cat, or someone’s hand, drink that hot chocolate and say to yourself, ‘well, at least I don’t live up North’!!