Good riddance, snow
Ah, Memorial Day weekend. The official kick-off to summer. Wait a minute. Summer? What happened to spring? It was kind of short this year. Or was it nonexistent?
I write this column a week before it’s printed, so as I sit at my computer, I’m watching snow come down and cover my deck furniture that I optimistically, and foolishly, uncovered at the end of April. I was kind of hoping that by announcing to my deck that spring had arrived it would influence the weather. Well, I tried, people.
If weather.com is to be trusted, it was supposed to be kind of nice this week. At this point I can only hope because, let’s face it, I think we’re all done with winter. We had Winter XL this year. The Anti-Spring. It was the winter that never ended. I have a feeling we’ll be snowed out of the Fourth of July.
I spent winter in denial of how nasty it actually was, not focusing on the reality of our valley’s weather as storm after storm dumped snow on us. It’s my coping mechanism.
People would try to tell me how unusual it was that we only had two sunny blue-sky days in January; I’d respond that January was always dreary. Someone would point out that we hadn’t ever accumulated that much snow on the ground in our neighborhood; I countered that I remembered waist-high drifts back in the ’90s. People talked about Interstate 70 being closed, again; I just replied I was glad I didn’t have to go to Denver that day.
But when the school district canceled school for the first time since big hair and shoulder pads were in style, well, that put me over the edge. I could no longer deny that winter was hitting us hard. With my happy little bubble burst, I started getting cranky every time it snowed. I’ve been really cranky this “spring.”
Spring snow isn’t unexpected. It falls every year, but there are usually enough warm sunny days to make you forget. So we can laugh off the April storms. But the May storms just make everyone angry.
It seems like a waste when it snows after the mountains close because then it’s not useful: it’s just an annoyance. When the lifts stop running, we think, “I can’t ski any more this year, therefore warm weather activities should begin immediately.” We put away the skis and bring out the other equipment without taking into account our dastardly spring weather.
Instead of kneeling to thank the snow gods for the awesome powder day, we curse them because they’re keeping us from progressing to the next phase. Everybody is ready to jump into the spring sports ” golfing, hiking, kayaking, tennis, biking ” and the continual winter messes with our plans. We’re in limbo; can’t move forward, can’t move back.
Prolonged winter wrecks havoc on the wardrobe changeover, too. Sometime around April, or faux spring, we pack away all the wool sweaters, down jackets, hats and gloves, replacing them with more skin-baring attire. And then it snows again. It does make for some amusing outfits, though. Funky layering is not an uncommon sight around town right now. But seriously, once I’ve switched to flip-flops, I do not want to put my feet in boots again! I’ve had very cold toes lately.
Our summers are short enough as it is; for Mother Nature to cut it ever shorter is just mean! It was torture every time I saw snow in the forecast this May. It’s wrong and unjust! But maybe it’s meteorological Darwinism. Survival of the fittest, and a mass exodus of the climatically weak.
Linda Boyne is an Edwards resident and a regular columnist for the Vail Trail. E-mail comments about this column to email@example.com.