Wednesday, January 2, 2013

regarding winter

It's possible to enjoy winter, to look at its more difficult points, such as slush and heavy, wet snows, and regard them in a manner that you are not accustomed to regarding them. People will tell you that the key to winter is bundling up, which is very true—proper winter gear makes a huge difference; the right pair of boots make it possible to take an evening stroll and enjoy adverse conditions—but the fanciest boots cannot do what an attitude adjustment can.  If you look at winter and its trappings with an eye toward beauty, you'll find that some of the difficulties of winter are much more endurable.  Gear is only a compliment to attitude.  There is a kind of promise in a pair of killer boots.  It helps, too, to look at winter as if you will never see winter again.  Even a slush pool accumulated at a low point in the street can be lovable.  Powdery snow coming down over the Auto Zone at night = bliss.

One of the other main treats of winter is coming in from the cold to a warm kitchen with a pot of soup on the stove.  This is not something that happens in the summer, which isn't to say that summer is without its pleasures—obviously it is—but it is wrong to think that coming in from the cold is a kind of consolation prize for dealing with winter.  A warm kitchen is not a consolation prize; it's an actual prize.  It's not something secondary to another, preferable situation.  Yes, I love a crisp afternoon beer in the heat of July, and I look forward to summer all year; but I think that I am not alone when I say that I don't usually look forward to winter.  Who looks forward to winter in New England?  Plow guys?  Skiers?  Perhaps it makes more sense to look forward to everything, to put winter right beside spring—it is right beside spring after all—and to love it for what it is.    

OK.  Thanks for tolerating this preachy and optimistic post about attitude.  


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