Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Regarding the weather

Dear Toronto,

I know it's been awhile since we last spoke, and I blame myself: I've been too busy to set aside time for you. And trust me, I feel your resentment: I felt it all through this dreary, muddy, lukewarm, snow-free winter. And whether it is a personal vendetta against me or simply the effects of global climate change, I want you to know this: this weather is absurd.

I moved to Canada from cold, snowy parts of a country south of here. Part of the allure was the northerly climate (and the degree program and the health care). My first winter here did not disappoint, and I found myself crutching through blizzards. What delight! What rapture! What single-minded focus, what visceral experiences the weather induces, merely to move about in the extreme cold!

And yet this recent so-called "winter" had none of these characteristics. I have coped by reading and rereading wintry books (like Antarctica and The Left Hand of Darkness), and attempting to ski on what paltry manmade stuff is at hand. I never had to use my most serious winter clothing.

And now, at the very beginning of spring, we've had a series of consistently 60F+ days. The equinox was just yesterday. Were you so impatient for spring that you rushed into it immediately after autumn?

I've only ever seen equally capricious seasons in film. As a joke.

Please. My body is still expecting freezing temperatures and windburn and frostbite. This afternoon it was 70F and I felt like reverse-hibernating (a.k.a. "moving to New Zealand"). Please do not rush headlong into summer, and its punishing heat and humidity, without dwelling a bit longer on winter. Don't give up so soon, and so easily.

I'm holding out for April snow. You've had it in reserve all these months.

Your resident (who carried her skis home in a tank top and sandals today),

This post's theme words are fann, an Orkney word for "snowdrift," and skutch, "a slight snowfall." We are famished for fanns, and skiing season suffers serious skutch scarcity.

1 comment:

masha51 said...

The "cold, snowy parts of a country south of here" also experienced the winter-that-wasn't.
Magnolia is in full bloom, and the raucous cacophony of bird's songs is more disturbing than The Band at Commencement/Reunion.