Another great column from Barbara Munson ... ONLY in the Herald-Guide.
Iíve always wanted to live up north for one entire year so that I could experience the change of seasons and a real winter. Iíve said this as recently as three months ago. Iím not saying it anymore.
With all the dampness and cool temps weíve been having lately, Iíve been completely miserable. Iíll admit it, Iím a wuss.
I feel like the cold gets into my bones and nothing will warm me up. Iíve taken to soaking in hot bubble baths to thaw myself out, and I bought a space heater to put on my freezing feet.
We went to dinner in the Quarter last night and had to walk a few blocks to the restaurant.
I thought I was going to freeze to death. There was no question that gumbo was going to be my appetizer; the only question was whether or not theyíd give me a bucket of the stuff to soak my feet in.
I felt especially stupid when we were walking back to the car and ran across some tourists in short sleeves – obviously they were northerners.
In light of the above, youíd think that the logical choice for our upcoming Mardi Gras vacation would be someplace like St. Thomas, or Miami, or any place where the temperatures are above freezing.
But nooo, weíll be visiting friends in Colorado. Colorado, where the temperature the other day was 0, thatís right ZERO, as in too cold to register, as in how in the world does your blood not freeze solid? What was I thinking?
Oh, Iím preparing the best way I know how. I bought womenís long johns and gloves, and I intend to bring half my wardrobe.
Iíll probably wear so many layers Iíll look like the Michelin Man or be unable to move like that poor kid in A Christmas Story, but Iíll do whatever it takes to keep from freezing to death.
I read in a health magazine that sprinkling cayenne pepper between the shoes and socks will keep your feet warm.
Iím wondering what airport security would do if they found a bottle of cayenne in my carry on luggage, or what would happen if I took off my shoes to prove that I donít have explosives in them, only to find them full of some mysterious red powder.
I have visions of being hauled into a back room at the airport to be questioned by the FBI guys, who Iím quite sure wouldnít look anything like the guys on Without a Trace, while my familyís forced to travel on without me. I guess the cayenneís out. I love adventure, just not that kind of adventure.
My friend in Chicago wanted to be first to get into a book sale yesterday, so she stood outside for 20 minutes when the wind chill factor was -30į. MINUS THIRTY!
She said that you donít have to worry about having a runny nose because the nasal mucous freezes.
So, if you have a stuffy nose you have to use a chisel instead of a Kleenex? No thanks.
Thereís nothing on this planet that would make me stand outside in weather like that, unless they were giving away tickets to get the heck out of there.
Another good friend lives in rural Minnesota, a place that until recently was my ideal temporary retirement place.
She sent me photos of the snow from her first winter there. In one photo she circled a stop sign so I could get an idea as to just how high the snow was.
The sign was about three inches above the snow. They couldnít even open their side door that year because the snow drifts were higher than the door.
My claustrophobia immediately started kicking in. How does anyone stuck inside for lengths at a time not turn into Jack Nicholson in The Shining?
There could be no sharp objects in the house if I lived there.
As you can imagine, Iíve been rethinking my retirement to the northern climes. Iíd still love to escape the heat and humidity of New Orleans summers, but now Iím thinking I want someplace with a year-round temperature in the 70s.
San Diego might be nice, or even Peru, but Iím afraid Minnesotaís no longer in the picture.
Barbara Munson is accessible! Write to her with your questions, comments, kudos or complaints at: firstname.lastname@example.org ...