Snow! A New England Four Letter Word.

Well the weather outside is frightful…now that I have that song stuck in your head, let’s discuss that four-letter word…snow!

Yes, it’s December in New Hampshire and very rarely do we make it all the way through the month without even a dusting of the white stuff.  We all look forward to the first snow that completely blankets the ground hiding even the most stubborn blade of grass.  It conjures up postcard pretty pictures of Christmas in New England, with white steeple churches and horse drawn sleighs.  Before you ask the question, yes we have both of those in abundance.

Angelic you may think if you are not from around here and quite frankly the ski industry does get very excited about the white stuff and I have to admit, I do enjoy cross country skiing and snowshoeing on a sunny winter day, but let’s face it, when you get up on a Monday morning and have to drive for twenty minutes down a one lane road where everyone is inching along at 20 miles per hour and visibility is practically nil, happy thoughts are NOT what are going through your head.

Snow, for all it’s symbolic beauty, is cold, slippery and (when you’re behind the wheel of a car) can be downright dangerous.   Up here in the North East nothing closes for snow.  Sure, schools may have a delay and sometimes they will close, but businesses stay open…no matter what.   So when that pretty white stuff starts falling out of the sky, it’s up early, get your snow boots on and get on the road as soon as possible.  Standard commutes will double when it is snowing out and you can’t be late for work.

I am not the biggest fan of winter.  It is too long and I get a little of that seasonal depression because it is so dark all the time.  And don’t even get me started on the temperatures.  January and February can see temps fall into the negative digits and with the wind chill even into the negative double digits!  There’s a technical term for that…it’s called “stupid cold.”

You may often hear an old Yankee make the comment that it is “too cold to snow.”  While your local meteorologist may disagree with this statement, it does have some merit.  Typically, extreme cold air comes down out of the arctic and is very dry.  You need moisture in the air for it to snow, so typically it is above zero when there is a storm.  It isn’t always the case, but we work on averages up here.

So, while we may be excited about the visual beauty of the first falling snow, I can attest to the fact that it can wear on your quickly.  Unless, of course, you are a professional skier, then, “let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!”


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