“Nothing burns like the cold.”

Last night the wind and the heat blasting competed for noise. I woke up around 3, read until 5 then slept in late. My friend who has been hobbling for days with a bad knee called and asked if I wouldn’t mind doing an errand. Her husband, her go-to-it guy, has the flu. I’m thinking the house needs a quarantined sign, but I was more than happy to do a mission of mercy. I put Gracie’s coat on her and we went outside then ran to the car. The cold was pervasive. My car temperature gauge said 17˚ but that didn’t take into account the wind chill. I can’t remember when last it was so cold. My house is nice and warm because the heat seems to be blowing constantly. The back door is closed so Gracie has to ring her doggie bells to go outside. She’s not out for long. Gracie is no dumb animal.

I used to walk to school all the time. It didn’t matter how wet or cold the day was. The walk wasn’t all that long, maybe 15 or 20 minutes, but we had to pass by a field where the wind swept across in the same way I figure it blows on the Russian steppes. Our clothes billowed in the wind and our faces felt as if they were frost-bitten. I remember trying to fight that wind by walking backwards. I was bundled. We all were, but sometimes it just didn’t seem enough. I can’t imagine walking to school on a day as cold as this one.

Most of the snow is gone, melted by yesterday’s warmth. Piles left by the plow sit by the sides of the road and snow lies on lawns sheltered from the sun. The snow is crusty, and I crunched my way to the driveway to get the papers. It is one of my favorite sounds.

The birds must be sheltered somewhere as there are none at the feeders. Usually all four feeders are filled with birds, some holding on to their spots, like the gold finches at the thistle, and others flying in and out. Yesterday there were many.

I am going out this evening to have dinner with friends. The paper says it should be around 10˚ once the sun goes down. I’m going to bundle even though it’s house to car and vice versa. My phone is charged just in case. Knowing my luck sometimes, I like to prepare for any contingency.

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21 Comments on ““Nothing burns like the cold.””

  1. Hedley Says:

    The Daily Mail announced that since records were kept, beginning in 1874, Detroit has only recorded 5 days where the air temperature did not exceed 0f all day

    The Terrier and I marched out in to -14F and a wind chill at -40F – Her lightbulb shaped shoot provides high wall from the winds and while I demanded immediate performance, she positioned, enjoyed the air and went to three legs guessing that a deer was beyond her high walls.

    im6 is claiming that the cold has got to me – I have become somewhat mesmerized by the Vibro Slim gal circa 1928. It is a true “Pictures of Lily” time situation but hey ……..

    We are not expecting to add to the 5 days – we may get 1f or 2f this afternoon, makes it much easier to roll the Toro out again.

    Where do the deer go when its this friggin cold ?

    • Caryn Says:

      About 6 of them are in my back woods eating twigs and bark and whatever dried swamp grass sticks above the snow. They bed down in the low bushes. They will stay until they know the coyotes are closing in.

      • katry Says:

        Coyotes I see!

      • Hedley Says:

        Caryn, it isn’t unusual to see a few of these fellows taking a nap on the berm behind my house which usually over stimulates the Terrier. There are some low lying woods and perhaps they are there.

        Southern Michigan has coyote, (no regrets) I have seen them but not in my neighborhood. I am very conscious that it would not be a good idea for Maggie and a Coyote to have an incident.

    • katry Says:

      My Dear Hedley,
      You and that Terrier are brave but she is low to the ground. You are a target for the wind and the chill.

      Maggie is the mighty huntress!

      I knew exactly what interested you about that picture and it had nothing to do with the Vibro Slim.

      So a warm spell is coming! 2˚ for me is still a stay in the house and experience the weather through the window sort of day.

      I never see them in the summer so I can’t help you there!

  2. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    I think I remember it being this cold right after the first big snowstorm of this winter. That’s when I frost burned my right hand and it still bothers me.
    My brother got frostbitten when he was just a little kid. His hand still bothers him. Ah, well. The cost of my stupid, I guess. I am now knitting some alpaca mittens for my frosted hands. Alpaca is the warmest stuff I can afford. Qiviut (musk ox) would be warmer but it is extremely expensive stuff owing to the fact that the musk ox don’t really appreciate being combed for their fluff. The gleaners have to add in the cost of combat pay. 🙂

    My birds are sort of hiding. There is a medium size hawk of some kind patrolling close to the ground. I see him swirling around my house periodically. He is not above crashing into the arbor vitae where all the English sparrows roost in order to see what he can scare up. I just now saw him taking a swing around the neighbor’s house to make a rear approach. The spawns of Satan ignore him. He’s not big enough to take them. They have to watch for the Red Tail pair that hunts here, too. And the coyotes.
    It’s like Mutual of Omaha Wild Adventures or whatever that show was called. 🙂

    Bless you for being a good friend and running an errand of mercy in this cold.
    Rocky and I are staying put today. We will play Kick Kevlar Kevin around the house and then we will nap on the couch.
    Enjoy the day.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      I can’t imagine combing a musk ox. I have enough trouble combing the cats who hate it. You are the first people I know who have been frostbitten. The news the other night said as little as 10 minutes out that night would be enough for frostbite so stay inside. I heed such advice.

      I think my birds find thick clumps of bushes to get out of the cold. The hawks are usually swooping over the highway. It isn’t often I see them here. I haven’t even seen many spawns. They are probably cozy in their giant nests.

      That would be Wild Kingdom denture. “Got him, Jim.”

      My friends would have done the same for me so I was happy to go. I even bought some flowers to brighten my friend’s day. She needed them.

      I will be home until time for dinner. Gracie is sleeping on the couch beside me and snoring away. Drives me crazy.

      I too foresee a nap!

      Stay warm!

  3. olof1 Says:

    Still really warm and nice here so I’ll try to enjoy it as much as I can, the change will come this weekend I’m afraid. I really don’t need a winter, I find this warm weather rather nice 🙂 even if I know we most likely have to pay for it this summer by having more flies, mosquitoes and ticks than usual.

    I got doggy bells this Christmas and Nove got it fairky quick and she’s the only one that never wants to go outside in the middle of the night 🙂 🙂 🙂 The other ones justr look very stressed and runds around like crazy 🙂 🙂 🙂

    It’s always good to be prepared for the worst, if one is it usually never happens 🙂

    Have a great day despite the cold weather!

    • katry Says:

      I’ll gladly share winter with you and maybe cut in half the misery; I am glad you are enjoying winter for a change!

      Gracie learned to use the bells when she was a puppy so she has no problem with them. I would use them all the time with any dogs I have. It helps to be able to keep the door closed as the dog door lets in the cold. This way Gracie can still go out when she wants.

      Thanks-I will. You enjoy your warm days!

  4. im6 Says:

    This just showed up on my Facebook news feed. Thought you and others might enjoy it. A nice explanation of how and why music affects us. http://jonimitchell.com/library/view.cfm?id=2730

    • katry Says:

      That is amazing.

      I choose music many times based on my mood. If I want to wallow, I do. If I want joy, I find it. Music is so much a part of my memories. In Africa, I had my music and listened almost every night to the same 5 or 6 albums. It didn’t matter how often I heard them.


  5. greg mpls Says:

    slightly warmer today..only minus 14 at the bus stop. i guess we are making progress. i must admit that visually i resemble something between ellis island and southpark. i am bundled! stay warm!

    • katry Says:

      I can’t imagine standing in that cold waiting for a bus. I doubt there are enough layers to keep me warm.

      You are one who needs to stay warm!!

  6. Birgit Says:

    Boring 55˚F today. I can’t even imagine -40˚F.
    Enjoy the warm dinner! Probably no ice cream as dessert today?

    • katry Says:

      Ouch! That hurts knowing you are so warm. That’s spring here.

      Nope, no ice cream today!

      • Hedley Says:

        There really isn’t much point of reference for -40f, Even though I looked like a Fat Michelin Man, the chill got me immediately.
        Avoid all things outside at all costs and hope that the pipes don’t burst.

  7. Clare Stevens Says:

    Coffee never tasted so good! Thank you my friend. And for dinner as well. 🙂

  8. Caryn Says:

    Rocky is half chihuahua and half terrier. He spent the first 6 months of his life as a street dog somewhere in Puerto Rico. He is a kind and well-behaved little dog.
    Except when it comes to coyotes.
    Then he becomes a fierce, fighting machine launching himself from the top steps in a determined effort to rip the throat out of the beast. The transformation was quite astonishing the first time I witnessed it. Kind of like The Hulk.
    The coyotes don’t view it that way, though. They trot off with a backward glance that says, “Follow us, Little One. You is tasty appetizer.”
    Fortunately, his dog line and his collar held up to the strain. Now I check for wild things before I open the door. 🙂

  9. Bob Says:

    Here in Toronto I am suffering through the coldest temperatures in decades. This morning the low temperature on the rental car thermometer was -22 C. I don’t really know the F conversion, it’s so cold that my hands hurt even with gloves. The wind chill was -40 which is the same temperature either C or F. I would love to visit the Artic Circle in summer but never wanted it to visit me in winter. It’s colder than a witch’s tit. 🙂

    • katry Says:

      That would be close to -8F which is cold on its own. I don’t remember the last time I was outside in actual minus degrees without the wind chill.

      My friend used to say a witch’s tit in a brass bra!

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