For many, Winter starts close to Thanksgiving. It’s really cold, the sun only comes out for a short while, and the leaves have all dropped from their trees leaving them looking like poor little dead twigs. Snow may or may not fall, but you definitely know that it’s winter. It’s time for hot chocolate, thicker coats with sweaters underneath, and lots more time indoors.
For Louisiana, it’s still spring.
Here the sun is bright and always warm, the temperature may drop and it does feel cold, but if I still wear shorts and flip flops outdoors more often than not, it’s not winter. Sure the calendar may say December, but in my mind and my body, it just isn’t. I’m ok with that now, now that I’m heading home to Oregon to celebrate Christmas with my family, but let me tell you, the Southern Guy got an earful about how the weather wasn’t acting correctly to what I’m familiar with and what everyone was promising me.
Finally after several mornings of my coworkers asking if it was cold enough for me yet, (my continuous reply having been a resounding “No,”) one of the paralegals said, ” Honey, Welcome to Louisiana.” It was then that I fully understood that I needed to relearn the weather because I am in the South, and we all know that the close you get to the equator the warmer it is for longer. So my mindset is more open about my new home, and my expectations are completely gone, because they were set to my Northern standards which just wont work now that I’m down here.
And then we had a “Sneaux” day (pronounced snow, it’s a Cajun joke…yeah not as funny when you have to explain it…sorry), where the rain would freeze on the outer layer and stay liquid on the inside so when it hits the water refreezes and the ice from the outer shell sticks… It SUCKED!
Thankfully I have an awesome boss, who didn’t make us stay at work for very long and it was a good thing too, the city started closing down ALL the bridges in the city. Well our city is split right down the middle by a river….so if you worked on one half of the city, but lived on the other side, you were gonna have a heck of a time getting home. So I tried using this time to run some last minute errands (groceries and such) and found out that people were treating this “sneaux” day (see what I did there?) as if it were a hurricane and stocking up on all and any food! The Southern Guy and I were out of luck, but thankfully I sort of prepared a head and had some food stockpiled for us. Our next problem came when the Southern Guy tried to get home, because his boss wasn’t checking on the conditions or something, all the main bridges were closed, so he had to go WAY out of his way to try to find a bridge that would still be open. Thankfully the boondocks bridge was still open and he was able to get home…
So moral of the story is, Southerners have NO CLUE how to handle cold weather. That day there were over 200 weather related accidents and at least 2 deaths in association with the weather, all because people thought they could drive like normal on the icy roads. 2nd moral is don’t go out when the roads are icy in the South, it’s safer for you inside no matter how well you handle the icy roads.