You know how when you remark on the heat on a summer’s day you feel compelled to follow it up with “not that I’m complaining.”
That’s because living in Atlantic Canada is supposed to make us pathetically grateful for good weather.
To a degree I do agree (I’m a bit proud of that turn of phrase) about being grateful for good days, but I’m at the stage where I’m grateful for every day, rain or shine, and I really like stormy days or cold, windy days when I can cozy up inside and appreciate that I don’t have to be out.
I know. You’re thinking if we didn’t have the weather to talk/complain about how would we manage? How could you be friendly to a complete stranger if you couldn’t say “nice day” or “miserable day” or, my personal favourites, “hot/cold/wet enough for you?”
There is complaining and there is making conversation or an observation. So, when I say continuous hot weather can be boring, I am not complaining, I am merely making an observation which has nothing to do with our recent trip to Florida.
Newman and I are not snowbirds. I used to think that it was because of circumstances not the least of which was that he didn’t retire until he was 70. I admit, I have been heard to moan about spending another winter in Newfoundland.
(My husband and I) do truly enjoy each other’s company, but during the winter every animal has its own method of hibernation.
This year we spent the month of March in Florida. Florida would not have been my destination of choice, but it had a lot going for it this year: three of my best and oldest (double meaning) friend couples whom I don’t get to see very often were there, two within walking distance of us, one was close by and the Blue Jays were in spring training. We were right on Clearwater Beach and had a lovely time but the good weather was really just a bonus because I would have gone to Siberia for the chance to be with all these people again.
And for the chance to spend some time with Newman! When his sons gave him a big TV for the den I joked about suing them for alienation of affection!
He divides his leisure time among Son no.3’s bronze foundry, Facebook, and CNN. I divide mine between cooking and housework.
If I’m not foraying into the thrift stores, I can usually be found snuggled up in my chair by the window, just a couple of feet away from my bird feeders, maybe four feet from the TV and eight from the wood fire. I often ‘Escape to the County’ or find out what’s happening on Coronation Street (both taped daily so I always have a backlog). I read and daydream about an English cottage of my own which I will never have and about what I could do to the summer house I have in Heart’s Content, which I will never do.
Newman and I cross paths of course; in the kitchen at happy hour is guaranteed and I make date nights for us to watch a movie.
When we first met he even took me with him when he had to make a few trips to the dump. He knew I enjoyed it, and now he doesn’t even ask if I want to go. (And no, contrary to popular belief, I am not banned from the dump because I was caught trying to save two wicker chairs from the landfill). The romance is simply gone.
Come summer we’ll see way more of each other because we’ll spend a lot of time in Heart’s Content where there’s only one TV and we putter around outside together and often drive up or down the shore and find a place for lunch.
We do truly enjoy each other’s company, but during the winter every animal has its own method of hibernation. Next year we’re thinking about breaking hibernation for Portugal. It will be warm, not hot, and there’ll be lots of places to poke around.
Newman and I both like poking around. For poking around you need poking around weather, which is neither hot nor cold.
And nothing to complain about.
Janice Wells offers her own unique take on life as a baby boomer, often served up with a twist of humour and a splash of gin. She lives in St. John’s, N.L. and tends a lovely garden there whenever fog, sleet, snow and gale-force winds permit. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
MORE FROM JANICE WELLS: