Friday, May 14, 2010

An ordinary Friday in an ordinary life

I am writing this post today at home (a day off from work) and listening to the birds sing outside my window. It is spring in the middle of May but the temperature is no more than about 50 degrees Fahrenheit. It’s like that over most of Europe and my husband told me that it wasn’t much warmer in NY. I always envy my friends in NY when I hear that the temperatures are in the 80s there while we sit here and feel the chill of a never-ending winter. Some people may like winter, the snow, the cold, and the feel of skis on their feet. They look forward to it. Not me. I look forward to lazy summer days, humidity, slowing down because the outside temperature is so hot that it forces you to, barbecues, hanging out with friends, being out on the boat and just relaxing in the sun. Winter is not a relaxing season. Too many pieces of clothing and accessories that need to be donned. Summer is relaxing—less clothing, sandals or bare feet, the feeling of being unfettered by excess clothing. We need summer in order to get the warmth into our bones, in order to slow down and to prepare ourselves for a new winter. I know I am this way and I am sure that there are others like me. My mother never used to complain about the weather. She used to go out walking in all kinds of weather, and was known as a great walker in the town she lived in (Tarrytown NY). I remember feeling irritated sometimes as children when she told us not to let the weather bother us. She was right, of course, but I find that I cannot just ignore the weather. I get irritated if the day is cloudy when it was predicted sunny, and cold if warm was predicted. I feel cheated out of something, I’m just not sure of what!

I have become like most Norwegians and Oslo-ites. At the first hint of a warm spring sun, they’re outside in droves. They leave work early and find their way outside to cafes and outdoor restaurants and activities. I do the same now, because I know that I cannot take the sun and warmth for granted. It may be just a one-day happening and then you need to take advantage of that immediately. Tanning salons are popular here in the winter. I have never been to one, but I am starting to understand why people use them. Thank God for the electrically-heated floors in our bathrooms—it is so nice to step out of the shower and onto a warm floor. The bathrooms are always warm. It feels great on a cold day.

But back to the birds. They carry on their business, unaffected by the temperature, the lack of fully-budded leaves on the trees, the chill in the air. They have a goal, to raise a family and by God, they are doing it, rain or shine, cold or warm. Something to learn from them, perhaps. On gray and chilly days like these, when I know that it is SUPPOSED to be warm and spring-like, I just want to go back to bed, sleep and wake up when the temperatures are behaving as they should and when spring has finally decided to appear for good.

But is this cold weather the result of global warming? Or the result of the volcanic eruptions and resulting ash clouds from Iceland? No one can really say for sure. Certainly not the weather scientists. If ever there was a pseudo-science, meteorology must be it. Critics of psychology say it is a pseudo-science, but how is meteorology any better? Just follow the weather reports for a month and you will see how wrong the meteorologists often are. You could play the stock market and win money about as often as their predictions are correct.

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