Unpopular opinion time: I don’t like snow. I know I’m not the only one: I know there are thousands of people who feel the same, but I feel like I know zero people who do not like snow the same way I do not like snow. It’s cold, it’s wet; it makes everything it touches cold and wet. And there really isn’t anything worse than being cold and wet. (Cold and dry, meh; Hot and wet, ok.)
It certainly makes everything awfully pretty. Postcard pretty. Just about the loveliest picture of the serene and hopeful. Everything might be cold and shitty, but one day all this is going to melt and we’ll have spring again. Winter is really the hopeful season. Nothing better than anticipation.
With that sentiment, you’d think I’d enjoy snow and winter. But I don’t. It’s still cold and wet. I still feel like I’m stuck in a time suck; stasis. Like I am trapped. Because I am. As a pedestrian snow traps me. Let me qualify: snow traps me anywhere that isn’t a city. (Which could get me started on the lack of public transportation in this country, but I’ll spare you the soapbox.)
Snowplows come around about a million times before, during, and after a snowfall and push the horrid stuff onto the sidewalks, which outside the predominantly Urban, no one is required to clear. Which, in such a family-oriented suburb, like the hellish one I grew up in, I think is a colossal mistake (ask me about the times I almost got hit by a car walking home from middle school). Without sidewalks, people don’t walk places, unless they have to (another conversation, re: the homeless). Those with no pressing place they must be, or much incentive to be anywhere, who don’t like being wet and cold, have a propensity to become reclusive shut-ins whenever there is snow.
(I know I’m whinging up a storm here.)
The paradox I struggle with comes mainly from my position as a staunch New Englander – we accept the struggle of a snowy winter here (builds character) the same way we accept the struggle of rooting for the beloved/reviled underdogs, the Boston Red Sox, season after season (willing to accept the intense mind games, and cling to the countless wildcards, because we might just see 2004 again). It is ingrained in my very being to embrace the horrors of winter because that’s what we do. And the caged up cabin fever I develop every season I spend in wintry Subruban Hell is, apparently, tolerable enough that I rarely break out the seldom used snow pants and ridiculously adolescent snow boots and go tromping outdoors because I just can’t take the tedium within anymore.
A stupidly outdoorsy person, I love the wilderness. I’d rather be outside than in. I cannot stand working in a building for hours at a time, I’d much rather a job that allowed me to be outside, basking in sunlight, surrounded by god’s green earth, or deep blue ocean. Except in the winter. Winter in New England. “The worst of the worst, the most hated and cursed.” It makes me long for summer, bare feet, sleeveless shirts, and warm sunshine.
Here is where you tell me: without the bitter we can’t appreciate the sweet. But, honestly, I don’t think I was meant for suburban New England Winter. What I really need is to get my act together, move somewhere it never drops below 45 degrees Fahrenheit, and continue to hate the snow when I return to NE to spend Christmas with my family.