Bad Weather

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05.22.13  During a sunny spell a few weeks ago, I pulled off my winter boots and had a pedicure, anticipating I would wear flip-flops one of these days.  In our conversation about the beautiful weather,  the manicurist said, “We live in a place that has bad weather most of the time.”

I’ve been thinking a lot about her comment, especially with the onslaught of rain and cold that  has moved in.  It always looks permanent on the NOAA five-day forecast where the computer screen is filled with icons of dark blue clouds and rain showers streaming down from them.  This morning our valley is colored in pink, “Winter Storm Warning.”  Sigh…

I guess it all depends upon your definition of “bad weather.”  In the 16 years I’ve lived here, I’ve yet to hear my friend, Rita, say the weather was bad.  Whenever I travel, often I touch base with her via email or text to hear what’s happening at home, and every time she declares that “the weather is beautiful.”  When I then search the NOAA site, I always wonder how it’s somehow not raining or snowing or blustery in her little spot of the valley.

When I lived in Colorado, the weather page of The Denver Post always had a tagline, “Tis a Privilege to live in Colorado” coined by the prosperous entrepreneur, Frederick Bonfils, in the 19th century.  Moving there from northern Ohio in the early 60’s, my father was especially ecstatic about the abundant sunshine, warm days and crisp cool nights.  In those days, when a December day was often warmer than it was in Miami, Florida, and we watered the lawn in the wintertime because it was so dry, we didn’t think about what was happening to our climate.  We loved the sunshine, just as the snowbirds here flock to Arizona, before winter’s big cloud socks us in.

For a number of years, my middle daughter and family lived in London and nobody there, of course, expects much sunshine.  Every winter day, we would take her toddlers, both clad in bulky snowsuits, to the nearby playground, with a towel in hand to wipe mud and water off the slides and swings, then back at her flat, we’d wash the muddy snowsuits immediately so they’d be ready for the next outing. On days it wasn’t raining or foggy, the Brits would say to us, quite cheerfully,  “lovely day, isn’t it”, and when there was a thin dusting of snow, “a bit fresh this morning, isn’t it.”

After the terrible F5 tornado in Oklahoma this week, the New York Times did a piece on why people intend to stay and rebuild in the town of Moore.  They quoted 78-year old Mrs. Saxon, “In California you have earthquakes, in New York, you have hurricanes.  Everywhere you’ve got something.  We just choose this over everything else.  It’s a good place to live.  It’s home.”

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