Saturday, January 15, 2011

A Tale of Two Cities

Winter is the season in which people try to keep the house as warm as it was in the summer, when they complained about the heat.
- Anonymous

As we "dig" ourselves out of two inches of snow, ice, panic, and total inconvenience here in the deep South this week, one thing has definitely been confirmed. I am ready for Spring! Of course, those that know me, know that I've been ready for Spring since I turned my calendar to October. It wasn't cold back then, but it was October, and having gone through this scenario for the past 63 years, I knew what was coming, and in October, I don't like January, I just hate it. No foolin', no kidding, I'm serious. I am positively the biggest wienie when it comes to cold weather. I mean it is just plain physically uncomfortable. Walking the quarter mile from my parking space to my work clinic to me is like these films you see of sailors stranded on some ice flow with the wind screaming and icicles on their beards. Trying to get up my get-up-and-go for a run is nearly impossible. It's reminds me of those cartoons where one little gremlin is on your left shoulder saying "Don't run...your lungs (and other things) will freeze" and the little guy on your right shoulder is saying "you big wussie. Just shut up and run!". Yeah, I run most of the time when it's cold and I complain like a little girl, but I guess I do "warm up" and as long as I don't stop, I can keep the thermostat fairly level. They (there THEY are again) say there is no bad weather, just inappropriate clothing. Well, if I wore appropriate clothing for 15 degrees, like it was this week, I wouldn't be able to move, never mind run. I love when Runner's World says "this high-tech shirt will keep you toasty" - baloney!! The only thing keeping me toasty is a hot shower and coffee. Keeping me moving while running is three layers of everything! Well, only two layers of gloves, but of course I have those dandy little HotHands in my gloves - man, I love those. And I love warm weather.
So, despite all this whining and carrying on, what does ol' Coach Al do this weekend? Why, go to Boston of course to see Adam (grandson) and Joanie (daughter-in-law). My son is out of town on business (Barcelona is out of town, right?), but from the emails I'm getting, he seems more determined to scrounge up tickets to watch one or two Barcelona soccer games than to learn any business stuff. That's my boy!!!
Meanwhile, Boston got 16" of snow this past Wednesday of which 15" is still around. The roads are plowed because the day before the the storm, the city declares a "snow emergency", which means you DO NOT park on the city streets because the heavy duty plows are coming through like Transformers and if your car is in the way, you'll be lucky if all you get is a several hundred dollar ticket. Your car may wind up several blocks away when Iron Mike realizes he just swooped it up. Today, I have to admit I did not get out to run. I mean, it was 7 degrees with ice everywhere. It wasn't hard to roll over. Besides, Adam & I had a little Grandpa/Grandson "rock-back-to-sleep" episode at 4 this morning (which I am definitely not complaining about), so slept in I did. Doesn't look like it'll get above freezing at all until the day we leave on Tuesday. But, that's fine with me. Yes, the adapted Southern Wienie would gladly venture into the cold outreaches to see Adam enjoy his frigid hometown. We're even going sledding later - he's too young for snowball fight, but just wait!!

Tomorrow morning, I plan to get out and try a run. I'll complain about the cold and the wind and the ice, but once I get back, I'll switch from running mode to Grandpa mode and answering "dis" (Adam talk for "what's this") all day will make dealing with the cold a lot more tolerable. But really, how do folks that live up here ever train? Are they just treadmill freaks? Do they constantly overdress like I still do, or have they finally learned the twenty degree rule? Do they even care what the weather is? Oh well, questions I don't really need answers to. Next time I come back in a couple of months, I'll be looking for Mr. Daffodil rearing his yellow head and seeing if it's time to teach Adam how to burp his name - no, I guess that's still a year or two down the road. As for now, Adam is napping, so I think I'll check the weather report and whine for a while until he wakes up. Stay warm my friends.

For those training for Mercedes, it's just 4 weeks away!! Holy Crow! It's really sneaking up on us. Is it just me, or are there very little ads or commercials or newspaper stories about Mercedes this year? Seems like the fanfare is a little muted compared to previous years. Based on the training email I get, there are a lot of folks training for the half or the full, so we'll see soon. Meanwhile, the schedule calls for 20 miles tomorrow for the full and 7 for the half. Check the map at my blog site if you don't know the route ( ). I plan to do my 20 next Sunday, so if anyone wants to join me then, that will be fine, but it will be very easy.

So, from the cold north to the slowly warming south, wear warm socks, use HotHands when you need them, and I'll see you on the roads - AL

"One child lost is too child saved can change the world"


weather said...

weather forecast from Global forecast system

snow rain maps

Liz said...

Hey al.... That 20 mile route was AWFUL! Now, I know why you chose this week to head to Boston....

Al D. said...

You are so right Liz. My 20 miler next week will be much flatter. Anyway, that which almost kills you makes you stronger. Congratulations on doing it. I'm proud of you.