Cold means something different to a Floridian.
OK, don’t get mad …… yet. You haven’t even read my opening sentence!
Let me explain.
I now live in Florida, south of Tampa and in a normal Winter, we just don’t get cold.
Not Cold like it was in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia where I grew up and spent the first thirty or so years of my life.
And we don’t get anywhere like the Cold weather you people in the northern states have to suffer through.
To us, our winter consists of sporadic spurts of uncomfortable weather that is driven down to us by strange happenings with cold fronts and such other winter weather things that you people who live “up there” know more about that us Floridians.
If you noticed, I said “uncomfortable” weather. To us, uncomfortable means we had to play golf with a pull-over on instead of just in a golf shirt.
Uncomfortable means rooting through your closet for a pair of long pants to wear that day instead of the year-round wardrobe of shorts.
Uncomfortable is putting the convertibles top UP for the trip to the supermarket.
Uncomfortable means wearing a pair of shoes and socks instead of your favorite flip-flops.
Hopefully you get the point. We Floridians are just not exposed to such horrendous weather as you people UP there accept as the winter norm.
Winter is tough on pretty much everyone.
No, Really! Some Winters are hard on everyone in the country depending on Mother Nature. And honestly, we Floridians aren’t so isolated that we don’t see how hard the weather has been on other people.
We might be Southerners, but we also have TV, just like you people who live up North. We watch the same “news-less” news shows that you do.
And we get just as bored as you do when they spend hours showing the same news people standing in front of enormous snow banks explaining to us all, for the umpteenth time, how much snow has fallen on some in the far reaches of the North.
And, when we go to our favorite Tiki Bar, we have the same conversations as you do. You will hear such things as;
- Damn, I need to go on a diet. I haven’t had these jeans on for three years and I could barely button them.
- Did you notice the traffic on I-75? It looks like a parade cars with license plates from up North. I hear you can’t find an empty hotel room anywhere around here.
No offense to Canadians but I don’t think I’ve ever heard so much French being spoken around me wherever I go. I mean really, after a few days of hearing so much French being spoken, you wonder “is there anyone left in Canada to take care of things?”
I even hear that all of the cheap Airlines are losing their Butts. Every plane coming down is packed, and no one is flying back. Once they get here, they end up flying back with partial loads.
The other night, in my favorite Tiki Bar, someone even told me that if this keeps up the whole state of Florida could be put on rationing for Vodka and Tequila.
The SnowBirds are drinking so much of the stuff that the Distilleries are having trouble keeping up with demand.
Anyway, the funny rumors you hear down here go on and on, just because of the weather we see repeatedly blasting the Northern reaches of the continent.
But, you should all look at the positive side of being Snowed in.
Really. There is an old adage that says something pithy about taking the bad and making something good from it.
You know, try to be positive and maintain a good attitude, and all of that. You know, let’s make lemonade from all of these lemons thrown at us.
So ….. just to help those SnowBirds who went glassy-eyed over the continually sorry weather here are a few things you can do to improve your mood.
- Having your car, sitting at the curb, covered with several feet of Snow is admittedly bad. But, look at the positive side. You haven’t had to buy gas for over a week now.
- Having the roof of your house covered with a foot of Snow is bad when ever it starts to melt. But, right now it provides an extra layer of insulation for your whole house and eases the load on your furnace slightly.
- Spending several hours a day shoveling the new snow in your driveway and on your sidewalk is bad. But, look at the Calories you have burned doing this instead of sitting in front of your TV for endless hours.
- Not being able to get to work is Bad. But, the Boss can’t get to work either so you just need to took at the time off as a surprise unpaid holiday.
- It may be punishing for you to get out and walk your dog. But, your Dog can now Poop and Pee in less than ten seconds before he drags you back into the house. No more sniffing everything in sight, making you miss part of your favorite game.
- It may not be easy to get out for more. But, you are now digging out cans and boxes of foods from your pantry that have been sitting there for months. And by now, you have become very creative in making meals from all of those strange packaged foods you never touched before.
- And sure, you may have run out of Beer two days ago, and thats really bad. But, you have found enough tea bags for at least two more days. And your Liver probably needed a few days of rest.
These are just a few examples of things that might seem bad about the continually sever winter you are experiencing, but as I have shown, you should look at the positive side of each of these and other set backs Mother Nature has thrown at you this winter.
And, there is one more thing you can try.
All of the major North/South Interstate highways are typically kept clear throughout the Winter.
So, Get in your car and COME ON DOWN! It might be Winter down here, but it’s a Tropical Winter.
by Don Bobbitt, 2015
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