Dear Winter. Again.


Last year, I asked nicely. I've even asked nicely this year. In December, when you showed a remarkable degree of commitment to your image of being cold and snowy, I rolled with it, asking only that you keep it to a dull roar in the week before Christmas so I could get all my errands done. Not only did you not respect my wishes at all, you pummeled the greater Toronto area with so much snow that the media started calling it Snowmageddon. Yes, I know the media tends to exaggerate, but in this case, they didn't and you sent snowstorm after snowstorm after snowstorm our way, to such a point that I couldn't get out at all, but despite your efforts to ruin Christmas, we had a very nice one, anyway. It should be said, though, that I appreciate you giving us rain instead of snow on Christmas Eve, but it was crumbs, honey. Crumbs.

In the new year, you've gotten even more enthusiastic to such a point that I can't remember the last time I was warm. Like really warm. You know I have asthma and can only crank the heat so much before I start wheezing (I miss radiators), yet you persist in giving me temperatures so much below freezing that turning on the heat is necessary. And that's another thing - although you gave us an awful lot of snow last year, at least you kept the temperatures relatively mild and I would have very much liked to be able to not turn on the heat for two entire winters in a row, but nooo. You had to ruin that, too, with your ridiculous insistence on showing me what “real Canadian winter” looks like. Which mean that in my home, this real Canadian winter involves my windows being frozen shut – not that I would open them in this kind of cold anyway (I may be descended from Vikings, but I’m not insane), it's the principle of the thing. Windows frozen shut just isn't right, despite the ice crystals sparkling prettily during the few nanoseconds you throw a bit of sunshine our way, before clouding the sky over again. And that’s another thing. Would it hurt you to give us a bit of sunshine every few days? I’m so low on vitamin D that I’ve started craving mushrooms again and I can’t stand mushrooms. I really don’t need these levels of confusion in my life.

And then you brought in the big guns last week. The talking heads called it "bitter cold" and they were right. Although I'd had enough advance warning to stock up on provisions enabling me to stay inside for the duration without being reduced to eating my shoes, it was indeed bitter. Both the temps and subsequently my mood. Not just because we saw windchill factors of -30 (that’s -22F), but especially because it's one thing to choose not to go outside, it's a completely different thing being forced to stay inside because your wheelchair can’t get through the snow and, even worse, because if you go out, it will actually damage your body. That one time you gave me frostbite 15 years ago was enough. Especially as the top of my right ear still aches with the memory when it gets cold enough and it certainly has done that in the past couple of weeks.

A few things have helped. Season Three of Battlestar Galactica has eased the sting of being trapped inside somewhat, as has the joy of putting everything handknit I own on my body (it's the only good thing about you) and speaking of that, at least I have friends who care about me while I’m being so grieviously harassed by you. Such as Carrie who sent me my trivia socks - they're gorgeous and look like the desert, which helps me imagine that my feet, at least, are in a warm, sunny place with little precipitation. She also threw in a pair she’d received at a swap meet, believing I might have more use for them than she would, what with living in Arizona. (due to poor planning on my end, the photo op coincided with laundry day, so I couldn’t model them. Wearing damp socks would be Wrong).

The great photography magazine and yummy Southwestern treats (cactus pear jelly things!) she included in the package also did much to reduce the bitterness (and I would show them to you, but I ate all the treats and the magazine is on loan. Again with the poor planning – I blame you, winter.). Friends like AlisonH who sent me dark, nut-free chocolate with a cheerful penguin tag that I hung on my ficus-as-Christmas-tree (and take three guesses why I can't show you). And then there are the friends who remember that when I am trapped by you for long enough, I near the edges of unhinged and so they call and keep me company while you continue to do your thing outside. And don't give me that crap about how it's "just who you are" and "you gotta be you", because relationships are about compromise, teamwork and partnership, a shared desire to make each other happy and as far as I can tell, I am the only one compromising here. And did I mention I’m not happy?

Therefore, I'm sorry to say, I am done with you. I am tired of always being cold, I am tired of seriously considering wearing mittens inside (and would, if it wouldn't make it difficult to use my computer and leave fuzz in my tea), I'm tired of wishing nothing more than to stay in bed under a warm comforter until the Spring solstice. In other words, winter, I have one nerve left and you are on it. I have had it with your shenanigans to such an extent that even writing and speaking your name makes me feel all weird and uncomfortable.

It’s not me, it’s you. So I’m moving on to a form of weather more responsive to my needs. I’ve asked you to leave, yet you persist in stalking me, so unless you cease and desist with your extreme behavior and learn to moderate yourself somewhat, I will take out a restraining order.

And winter? Just one last thing.

Just... Bite me.