Waiting for the Punchline

Jessie: In northern New England, wondering if it is too early, or just plain wrong to gloat about missing out on the snow covering the mid-Atlantic. 

I’ve been thinking about weather a lot lately. Winter has been slow in coming to my part of the world and much bemused merriment shines from my neighbors’ faces. The scraping grind of snowplows is usually the background noise of winter here but instead, all has been eerily quiet. Ice races have been canceled on the lake. The ground has just recently consented to freeze into solid, irregular lumps. Frost heaves and potholes are only now beginning to make nuisances of themselves.

All of this had got me to thinking about how I am not spending the winter this year. I’m not using my slow cooker ever single night. I’m not wearing my bathrobe over a fleece track suit, over thrermals, all day. I’m not considering ordering all our food from Amazon so I don’t have to go out into the cold to the grocer. I’m not thinking about adopting dogs from the local shelter just so they will sit on my lap even though I am horribly allergic. I’m not even typing this post while wearing fingerless gloves.

Sure, the temperatures plummeted to below freezing for a few days last week but they’ve bounced back up and any forecasts for precipitation are calling for snow showers rather than drifts. The days have noticeably lengthened before I’ve lost the will to leave my bed. I haven’t even had to make a desperate run to the pharmacy for tissues and cough syrup for one of my kids.

I ought to be happy but instead I feel uneasy, like I’m waiting for the punchline. Like a tsunami will roll up over my barely snow-dusted lawn or an earthquake will crack my ice-free driveway. Maybe killer bees will arrive come spring or rattlesnakes will start basking on my  flagstone patio by summer.

The worry almost makes me envy those people who are digging out their mailboxes. Almost.

Readers, are you having an unusual winter? If so, what are you or aren’t you doing lately?


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4 Responses to Waiting for the Punchline

  1. Barb Ross says:

    Glad you’re still waiting. It has been a weird one.

  2. Gram says:

    We got nothing but a dusting from Jonas, but look at last year! It wasn’t until Feb. that we started getting hit. But El Nino this year will probably keep us quiet. We do need the moisture though.

  3. The later winter starts this year, the happier I’ll be. We had over 12 feet of snow last year on Mount Desert Island. It started early and it ended late. The last of the ice clung to the cliffs until May 1st. The snow banks alongside the Park Loop Road didn’t fully disappear until mid-May. This year, you may color me “Grateful for Small Favors.” 🙂

  4. Some how all of your snow ended up on my lawn and road. Please come get it!

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