Freezing temperatures have descended from Canada to the Northeast. The thermometer dropped from the 30s to the 20s and into the teens. Winter was back in New York
Last week I dressed accordingly for my departure from the Fort Green Observatory and pulled on a teeshirt, cashmere turtleneck, a wool sweater, and a thick winter parka, then descended to the first-floor where I tugged on heavy boots and topped my head with a Russian hat. I didn't bother to look in the mirror since obviously my body shape resembled Bibendum, the Michelin Tire Man. In this weather survival trumped fashion and I headed to the subway.
My neighbors hurried on the sidewalk. No one was bothering to say hello. Syllables froze in our mouths. I reached the station, as the Q train pulled up to the platform. Every car was packed with passengers and we huddled together for warmth. No one spoke of anything other than the cold and this subject dominated conversations through the work week.
On Thursday morning I stupidly decided to wear a cashmere coat rather than the bulky parka. The icy wind ripping around the corners revealed the error of this decision and I thought about returning home to change my clothes, then told myself, "I'm from new England. Winter is in our blood."
I picked up my pace and fast-stepped to the station.
The chill sunk under my skin into my muscles and penetrated my bones.
It was only 21F, which was spring in Siberia.
Still the older I get, the less I like the cold.
This coming week the temperature is forecasted to hit the low 30s with snow tomorrow.
I have my parka ready for action.
I'm not going anywhere without it.
And neither would Bibendum.