February 24, 2014

Winter, Wisconsin, 2013-14

Posted in weather, Wisconsin, writing at 9:48 am by elizabethcaulfieldfelt

I try not to complain about the weather.  When Andy and I were deciding where to settle down, we both chose Wisconsin.  So, I’ve chosen to live in a place that has a real winter.  Mostly, I like winter: the clean feel of cold air, the beauty of a fresh snowfall, cross country skiing in a lonely forest.  I grew up with a change of seasons, and I would miss it if I lived in a warmer climate.

Because I live just over one mile (1700 meters) from work, I try to ride my bike in good weather and walk in bad weather.  This winter has been a challenge, as there have been a number of days below 0 Fahrenheit (-18 Celsius), with a wind chill near -40F (-40C).  I’m hardy, but I’m not that hardy.  I’ve had to drive, which I find depressing.

Snow? Yes, we’ve gotten some snow.  Last Monday we received a little over 6 inches (16 cm) of snow.  This was on top of the several feet (about a meter) of snow we’d already gotten. The problem with this much snow is that when you shovel, you have to lift your shovel more than waist high (almost shoulder high) to get it off the driveway.

Note the mailbox (bottom right) to get a perspective on the snow's height.

Note the mailbox (bottom right) to get a perspective on the snow’s height.

This picture was taken on the gorgeous, sunny Tuesday after Monday’s heavy snowfall.  We were predicted to get another 6” to 12” (16 – 32 cm) on Thursday.  I’m happy to report that that storm missed my town, though other parts of Wisconsin did receive heavy snowfall that day.

OK, so why am I writing about the weather on my “reading, writing, no arithmetic” blog?  The cold weather and the snow has made it hard for me to do anything.  I summon the energy to go to work and teach.  I cook meals and clean (sort of).  Our Christmas letter / New Year’s letter has become a Valentine’s letter (mailed today, more than a week after Valentine’s Day).

I was going to include some weather statistics in this blog, but I couldn’t find any in a three-minute search, so I haven’t. Meh.

Writing? Writing is the activity that always gets short shrift in my life, and I haven’t done much since early January. Ech.  I’m blaming the weather.

It has been a harsh winter all over the United States and a dangerously mild winter in Europe (flooding in England).  How has this weird weather affected you?

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5 Comments »

  1. Wisconsin boy, here. Normally, winter doesn’t affect my mindset much. This year, however, I’m woefully sick of it all. Spring can’t come quickly enough.

  2. sarigelin said,

    I like reading about weather – it’s all grist to a writer’s mill and who knows, as you’ve given precise statistics, a student may pick up the information for use in a thesis. Yes, we’ve had incredible floods here in the UK and we now talk of Henley-in-Thames, as the water reached the town centre and swans suddenly had a whole new extension to their living area.

    As for snow, I lived through some winters in eastern Turkey where it could snow two metres in a non-stop eight hour session and where our midday temperature was -18o. The worst thing was the three-day gales howling out of Siberia. Memories… but give me baking sunshine, any day.

    • Wow! I’ve never thought of Turkey has having such severe winter weather. Yes, as a writer it’s good to have that experience tucked away for further use—and I’m ready to tuck it away and get on with spring!

  3. andyfelt said,

    The long, bitter winter makes spring that much sweeter. I like the trough of the weather wave because I know I can ride the crest.


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