When I moved from Florida to Ohio as a young bride I had no concept of “cold”.
- That snow is pretty, white and fluffy – when in fact snow is also wet, cold, slushy & gets dirty
- That winter fashions in magazines are beautiful leather, wool, plaids, boots, sweaters, overcoats, scarves, socks & boots – when in fact, by the time I bundled up to be warm enough to survive, I couldn’t fit behind the steering wheel of my VW Beetle;
- That ice filigreed trees, snow-covered walks, icicles, frozen lakes and rivers are picturesque – when in fact I slid on the ice and fell on my ass every time I walked out the front door;
- That the cold air is crisp and invigorating – when in fact it burns your skin, covers your face in snot, chaps your lips and generally makes you look ugly;
- That children are adorable in their snowshoes and mittens – when in fact, by the time you get them stuffed into their snow pants, zippered into their winter jackets and shoved into their boots and mittens, they have to pee;
- That our home would look like a Currier and Ives print with sunny blue skies and pristine snowfall – when in fact, after Christmas there are still three months of dark, dreary days until Spring.
I spent 11 winters dreaming of moving home to Florida and have spent the past 30 years enjoying sunny, warm winters. Why am I now planning to spend a month between Thanksgiving and Christmas in the northern woods of Michigan and hoping for snow?
I’m retired and have a cute little cottage on the shores of Lake Huron where I can retreat and do nothing but the things I want, no responsibilities or schedules. If it’s bright and sunny maybe we’ll go snowshoeing; if it’s miserable maybe I’ll set up my sewing machine in the kitchen & quilt or maybe I’ll sit in front of the fireplace and read until I get tired enough to shift to the sofa for a nap. On clear days we’ll put on our weatherproof boots and walk along the shore of the lake taking pictures of the frozen fractals.
The difference is having to go out in the snow and cold vs wanting to play outdoors in the snow and cold.
I can’t wait.
Heaven or hell … I choose heaven.