My friend gerisullivan
moved to Boston a decade or so ago from Minneapolis. At some point, she experienced her first Boston winter, which is very different from Mpls winters. Ours go something like this: mild, mild, mild, enormous snowfall, cold, thaw, no white, mild, mild, enormous snowfall, cold, thaw.
Well, like that.
See, when Minnehopeless gets snow, they get to keep it, sez Geri. Sometimes, they get to keep it for *months* at a time.
In 2003, Boston had a stretch when the temps didn't crack 25 for ~2-3 weeks. In a row. It was horrible. We were crying (ice cubes) in the streets.
Then we had our thaw (which, in some years' winter months, often means the temps go up as high as 60°F during the day), and all was right with the world.
* * * *
So you may have heard about/experienced the effects of this year's "polar vortex": a time when the Canadians, who have been hording the sub-zero temps for years at a time, "release the hounds," which come barking out of the north and freeze places like Baton Rouge...and everybody cries (ice cubes) in the streets of a couple of dozen states.
Did this affect greater Boston? Well. Er. No, not really.
Chicago has been wanting to cry, but they're so cold their tear ducts don't work any more. Mpls has closed school quite a bit because of the sheer coldness of it. Even my native Ohio has been slammed by the ice weasels of the north.
Here in greater Boston, we've had one or two days when temps actually fell below 0°F at night, but no days when the high was that low. It's surely a mark of the impending apocalypse when it occurs. No horsemen saddling up around here.
And what has happened to our temps this month? Well, for a change, the thawing days have often hit on the weekends. On Sunday, the NWS is predicting a high of 47°F for Boston. While we had (according to the nice folks at the Blue Hill Observatory
) the 10th snowiest January on record (30" or so), we've also had this really weird temperature roller coaster, which has led to massive, regular thaws. In fact, we had 3 days over 50°F this month, and another six over 40°F.
None of these facts will stop us from complaining about the weather, because we're humans. But whenever Mike and I hear someone from Chicago saying, "Oh, you're from Boston? You must hate the winters there," we laugh. Yes, we tend to get our snowfall in massive chunks...but it *does* thaw. On balance, I'll call it a win.