Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Feeling fine for weak winter weather, while wondering what awaits us

We’re most definitely in winter. The calendar tells me that, and the light flaking of snow I see on the ground out of my living room window provides circumstantial evidence of such.

Yet we all have to confess that we have not been hit with anything near what winter weather is supposed to be like.

WE DON’T HAVE the heavy snowfall that accumulates. In fact, I can only remember one day of anything resembling significant snow.

Which is why on Tuesday, the Chicago metro area actually tied a record – 319 straight days without at least one inch of snow falling. The total amount of snow we’ve seen this winter comes to 1 1/3 inches, but that is when you add up each and every trace of snow that has come along.

Wednesday will be the day we set a new record. And if the weather forecasts are even the least bit accurate, temperatures are going to get to spring-like 50-degree-type weather by the weekend – which amuses me because I’m supposed to attend a family gathering on Saturday.

Those relatives of mine whom I did not see on Christmas will be gathering at an aunt’s house for sort of a belated holiday celebration. One last bit of Christmas before all the decorations have to come down.

AND EVEN IT won’t be a White Christmas!

Even the temperatures have been mild – we haven’t gone below 10 degrees at all this winter season.

In short, we haven’t been hit with traditional Midwestern winter. Although I have to admit that making these statements makes me wonder if I’m tempting fate.

For I am among those who enjoy watching The Weather Channel (particularly when it’s meteorologist Jen Carfagno giving the forecast) and seeing how the weather trends are passing throughout the nation.

OTHER PARTS OF the United States have been getting hit with snow and cold temperatures. I particularly noticed that one heavy storm of about a week ago that went from the southwest, passed through Southern Illinois and central Indiana (including Indianapolis) and into the northeastern part of the United States.

Meanwhile, people in Wisconsin have been hit with their own winter storms. It seems that to the north and to the south of us, it is a traditional winter.

Yet here in Chicago, we’re being spared!

Perhaps I should be the optimist and feel thankful for the fact that we’re not now facing temperatures below zero while also being buried in snowdrifts that cover our cars and cause us to be stranded.

I STILL RECALL the heavy snowfall in a 24-hour time-period that fell in February 2011. It was a couple of days of chaos, and took about a week before my life’s routine was fully back in place.

Which means the cynic in me wonders what kind of misery are we going to be hit with come February or March – to make up for the mild weather we’re facing now.

Perhaps I’m panicking for nothing. I certainly hope so. Although I suppose there’s the other side of the equation that will argue this mild weather is some sort of evidence that we’re facing Global Warming – that our whole weather system is out of whack and that we have caused long-range damage.

That is an even more-depressing thought; one I would prefer not to have to have these days.

I AM COUNTING down the days until mid-February – the traditional beginning of baseball spring training. It usually serves as a good mark in time that the worst of winter weather is over.

All I know is that if we get hit with that major storm come March 4 (which would be the one-year mark from the last time we got hit with any significant snowfall), my guess is that it is what people will remember – and not the fact that we are setting all kinds of records in recent weeks for mild weather in the greater Chicago area.


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