Thursday, January 24, 2013

This is Winter

My Car. This Morning.
It was nine degrees outside when I left for work this morning. That's pretty cold. So cold, in fact, that my car never warmed up enough to use the heater for the entirety of my ten minute drive to the train station. So cold that after walking without gloves so that I could finish reading an American Idol recap on my phone during the half a block between where I park my car and the train platform I was pretty sure my fingertips had just frozen solid and cracked off. So cold that my phone, after being outside for just a couple of minutes, was doing that weird sluggish thing smart phones do in the cold, making the reading of the aforementioned American Idol recap awfully difficult.

It's brutally cold.

But you know what? It's also winter. January in New York. This is what's supposed to happen in January in New York. We haven't felt winter like this in the past few years due to scary global warming, but let us not forget that while every meteorologist in the northeast is talking about this week-long cold spell like it has never happened before, forty-five and fifty degree days in January is just not normal.

Winter has always been my favorite time of year. Maybe it's because I grew up in Pittsburgh, which is basically a frozen, snowy tundra from Thanksgiving through May. Or maybe it's because I spent my high school years in Florida where there is no winter. Or maybe it's because I spent college in Boston, where it was so cold that I now have a shelf of sweaters in my closet I call my "Boston Sweaters," because they are too heavy and hot to wear anywhere else (except maybe this week, in New York).

Most of my best childhood memories are winter memories. Playing "snow olympics" outside with my friends. Hot chocolate and cookies on snow days. Walking to the local movie theater when the snow was too high to drive. Ice skating on the outdoor rink until I couldn't feel my fingers or toes.

And my adult memories too. Sledding down a massive hill on my college campus on trays we stole from the cafeteria. Running double digits for the first time in a snow-covered Central Park. Walking eight blocks in a raging blizzard when we decided we just had to eat at the famed Shake Shack that very night, and then deciding to walk some more to a diner for dessert. Curling up in front of the fire in our new living room as frigid wind howls outside.

No, nothing beats the winter.

But for anyone who is counting the minutes until winter moves on and spring takes its place, head on over to Rockefeller Center ice skating rink, where there is an oasis waiting, just for you.


  1. I'm frozen cold as I'm reading this because I can't get warm or get my house warm enough today (4 on the car!) But I totally agree with you...cafeteria trays, being cozy inside, hot chocolate, snowballs, sweaters and sweats. So many of my favorite things have to do with this season. We have a beautiful dusting here today. Tomorrow though, I get to go warm! Woot!

  2. Skating at the Rockefeller Center is on my bucket list!

  3. I am the opposite of you. I hate winter-the colder and darker it is, the more I don't like it. I was happy about those 45-50 degree days and I'm dying in this 9 degree stuff!

  4. This winter is killing me. It's probably because I've been spoiled with the warm winters of the last few years, or because I have to walk my son to school in the morning, which I've never had to do before. My fingers go completely numb, even covered and in my pockets, after only about 5 minutes outside. And it makes me grumpier than usual. I just need it to get to 30. I can't take any more 12 degree days!!