Winter has returned to Sarnia-Lambton. Again. I am positive about this and it’s no use kidding ourselves.
We are doomed.
I alternate between bitterness and befuddlement at the annual invasion of snow and cold, but this year was extra special.
One day, there I am, looking at my green lawn and patting myself on the back. I was shrewd and punctual about cleaning out the garden pots —why does there always seem to be more pots this time of year than at planting season? — had pulled up the fading annuals and cut back the rosebush.
I had promised to wash the windows – not actually done it, but promised — and covered the air conditioner and washed the furnace filter.
And I was formulating a sensible plan to forego raking until all the leaves had fallen from the stunning red maple in the front yard. Rake too early and you just have to do it twice.
Then, whoosh, we were knee-deep in snow.
I’m told it was some kind of historic record but that gets no cheers from me.
I am a responsible citizen, for the most part. I have voted in almost every election and I ran for vice president of Student’s Council in high school. I lost by a wide margin, but I did run and had, thanks to Bill Y., a great poster.
I have stopped letting our dog Snacker run off-leash, following a few blistering lectures from fellow citizens. And I pick up his deposits.
But after years of writing detailed Letters to the Editor to complain about our winters (not published, I might add), they still happen.
I have called elected representatives repeatedly. Do these folks never return calls? Admittedly, two did, but after I started in both claimed to have dialed a wrong number and hung up.
Yet every year around this time winter arrives again. Some years it’s appalling and some years it’s horrible, but it’s always disheartening.
And don’t talk to me about skiing. Or Florida.
Officially, winter is supposed to begin its chilly dance on Dec. 21, which is a Saturday. I checked the calendar twice.
But for some reason it burst in early this year with a big smirk, strutting and cracking its knuckles.
Mark Twain famously said, “Everybody talks about the weather but nobody does anything about it.”
He was no doubt referring to the United States. But in the neighbourly spirit of international harmony I can confirm it holds equally true about winter in Sarnia-Lambton.
Bob Boulton is a Sarnia writer and the creator of a blog for new and renewing writers, bobswritefromthestart.blogspot.com