Memories of a long-ago July … 2007

121307-southhaven.jpgCheck this shit out (Fig. 1). A picture of sunset in South Haven, Mich., on July 4, 2007, at 9:32 p.m. Feels like years ago at this point. Now it gets dark at 5. What a crock. Since this picture is the desktop wallpaper on my computer at work and computers at home, it teases me basically all the time.

It’s strange how the changes of the seasons work. It’s summer, and then, suddenly, it’s winter. Or at least that’s how it feels. There’s a month or so of transition (it used to be called “fall,” but it seems that fall barely exists anymore, it’s so damn short) and then you go from hot mode to cold mode and stay there for months on end.

Once you’re mired in the season (actually, I’ll apply the term “mired” to winter and “immersed” for summer, since winter is more of a chore), it feels like forever ago since the previous opposite season happened and forever again until it will arrive again.

It’s gonna be a long winter. It’s Dec. 13 and already we’ve had two ice storms in Central Illinois. There’s nothing quite like an ice storm when you don’t have a garage and you have the fun experience of spending 20 minutes in the morning getting half an inch of ice — not snow; ice, fused to your vehicle like it’s been welded — off your car with the help of jugs of hot water and your handy windshield scraper.

Don’t get me wrong; I’d miss having winter, if for no other reason than because it gives me the chance to look forward to spring and summer every year. (My sister, living in San Diego where there are no seasons in the traditional sense — unless you count wildfires — laments this, and I suspect I would if I were living somewhere with no winter.) But the thing about winter is that after about a month or two of it, you’re ready for it to be over, particularly if the ice storms start on Dec. 1 like they have the past couple of years here.

It gets dark before 5 p.m., and I find myself barely comprehending the fact that when I was on vacation in July in the westernmost part of the Eastern Time Zone, I was watching sunset at nearly 10 p.m. I look at the picture I took on the beach, and it seems like it was a year ago since that happened, not a mere five months.

Hell, two months ago I was walking around in shorts because it was so ridiculously hot in early October. That feels like forever ago.

Maybe if the snow and ice can let up for three or four weeks or so (one can hope) and allow winter to simply be cold rather than such a friggin’ slippery mess, it won’t seem like quite so long since I contemplated going outside in sandals.

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7 comments on this post

D Payne
Saturday, December 15, 2007, 6:30 pm (UTC -6)

Must be an age thing. I’m finding I dislike the winter more as I get older. But, there still is something I like about the atmoshpere of dark cold nights – as long as it doesn’t get too cold! The only weather I really can’t stand is rain, because even after you get indoors it affects you. At least if it’s just cold I don’t get wet!

Max Ehrhardt
Saturday, December 15, 2007, 8:46 pm (UTC -6)

There’s nothing like a cold snowy midwestern winter. I know I couldn’t live without it, as D Payne put it there is something awesome about the cold dark nights of winter. Not to mention tromping through the fresh snow.

But I do see your point about the ice storms if you have no way of protecting your car. It’s almost hard to believe how STICKY the ice is. Thank the gods for giving my building underground parking!

Evan
Sunday, December 16, 2007, 9:59 pm (UTC -6)

I live in Illinois as well, and the weather lately has me cooped up in my apartment. It’s so nice here in the summer, too. *sigh*

Sven
Monday, December 17, 2007, 3:53 am (UTC -6)

Arh, you Americans….you think thats bad try living in Finland.

Half an inch…thats what 2cms?

I dream about those days where I only have 2cms of ice to deal with…..we measure it in feet at the moment.

Saturday I had over 4 feet to clear just to get OUT of my driveway.

And it will only get worse before it gets better here 🙁

I feel for you Jam, really I do 😀

Jammer
Monday, December 17, 2007, 10:42 am (UTC -6)

^ Are you talking about freezing rain (ice) or snow? We just got 8 inches (20 cm) of snow over the weekend, which is much different than freezing rain/ice. I’ve never heard of ice measured in feet. That’d be like getting 4 feet of rain in the summer. And how would you clear 4 feet of solid ice? That would be impossible. Are you actually talking about snow here?

When I say a half inch of ice, I mean solid ice, a half inch thick, stuck to my car, which must be melted and chiseled — not brushed — off.

Granted 4 feet of snow would suck as well. When we get 1 foot here, that’s pretty bad.

Sven
Monday, December 17, 2007, 11:18 am (UTC -6)

Hi Jam,

No thats snow, buts it compacted…the first foot is not to bad you can get through that quick easily…but the last few, its like concrete 🙂

To the point where I have to actually use a mallet to break it up otherwise its like a 2 foot wall at the bottom of the drive.

You can’t leave a car outside overnight here as to clear the ice off it would take hours

The problem with Finland….is that its always raining, or in this case snowing, the last clear day I can remember was in September.

So its just freezing over what was there before.

I hate winter!! With a passion!!

Malnurtured Snay
Wednesday, December 19, 2007, 11:09 pm (UTC -6)

I’m not a fan of deep summer or deep winter, but I truly believe I would go insane without seasons.

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