Climatization and Other Mythologies of Change

When I was a teenager, I traveled to Eurpoe with a big tour group, bunch of other kids, some adults, etc. I was sort of “alone” on the trip, so I tried to be friendly with the other travelers. In the group were two guys my age from Texas, and I remember quizzing them constantly about what they were wearing.

In London, it was cold, wet, windy. Paris was much the same. In fact, I don’t think it was until Italy that we had “summer-like” weather by Wisconsin terms. But my Texan companions wore shorts and a t-shirt everywhere they went. They kept explaining they were “climatized” by Texas’s weather, but I thought that would mean they’d be cold everywhere. I didn’t get it. And, to be honest, I thought they were liars.

This is my first winter since 2000. I can’t say I was “eager” to have seasons because I like the obsessive consistency of daily sunshine and bearable temperatures. The only thing I ever liked about cold weather was dressing for it: wool! Flannel! Cordouroy! Rich and varied textures. (I feel the same way about linen in the summer.)

Now that winter has really set in here, I can tell you: I often think it’s not really that cold.

Sure, when the wind blows, it’s miserable. I hate it, and I freeze. But on a normal day when the temps are low and there’s no wind, I’m fine. I can actually still feel the humidity in the air, and it’s keeping me from getting cold.

Yesterday, Beau and I looked out the window and saw it snowing gently. It only lasted about five minutes, which is exactly the perfect amount of time for it to snow if it’s going to. And just like that, it was gone.

I sense there’s a metaphor there.

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