I Have No Need To Move
I KNOW THAT SPRING OFFICIALLY BEGAN a few weeks ago and I was truly grateful. Spring means that better weather is coming – unless you live in Denver or someplace like that. If you live there then Spring means that winter continues, pedal to the metal until mid-summer. That alone has kept me a “Flatlander” or close to it.
But now, it is definitely Spring, which in my book means that warm weather is on the way. However – I feel that I must define “warm weather.”
People can still go ice fishing at 40 degrees. That is not warm.
For me “warm” begins at about 72°F – and that can still be sweatshirt weather if there is a strong breeze. No – real warm weather starts at about 75° and goes up from there. The heat finally gets to my core at 80° and the last remnants of “Brrrr” are washed away by the sun. Unfortunately, it is also at 80° that many people begin to pant like an out-of-shape Basset Hound.
I think my preference for warmer temperatures stems from a winter experience as a child. Climb into your “Way Back Machine” and set it for 1950 (Back when dinosaurs roamed the earth.).
Our family was living in the hills of Western Pennsylvania and I was 4 years old. The winter of 1950-51 was one for the books. It snowed – and kept on snowing – until the snow was deeper than I was tall. After a couple of episodes when, the moment I stepped off the front porch, I disappeared from view, there was unhappiness. Mothers hate when that happens. From my point of view the world was limited to my feet, the snow walls towering on both side of me, and the sky. I think my, little more than a toddler, brain was traumatized. Hence, ergo, and since then, I have wanted it to be sunny and warm 12 months a year.
With that kind of temporal fetish you would think that I would get myself to Key West, Phoenix, or Ecuador as soon as I could. That would have made some sort of sense. So – when I left the hills where did I go? Cleveland. Cleveland, the home of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and snow up to your belly button 6 months a year and icy winds off of Lake Erie that could put a chill on an erupting volcano.
Eventually my remaining brain cells bumped into each other during the winter of 1977-78, and I said to myself, “Help!” and I began to sing the theme from the “Beverly Hillbillies.”
“They said Californy is the place you oughta be.”
In early December of 1978 I packed up my car and I drove to Beverly – scratch that – I drove to Northern California – where 70° is considered a heat wave and the weather forecast says, “Chilly and Damp just like yesterday.”
Twenty-five years later I made another move, this time motivated by the heart. And the heart is the Supreme Court.
My wife, the lovely and geographically centered, Dawn, was living in Indiana after her divorce and had no intention whatsoever of moving to the Left Coast (A wise decision on several levels.).
This move was to the semi-tropical and balmy climes of Western Indiana. I guess that I can’t get a firm grasp on the concept of locations where it is warm, hot even, year round.
This move to Terre Haute (That’s French for, “Put on a Hawaiian Shirt and listen to Jimmy Buffett.”) was, far and away, the smartest move I could ever have made. I now bask in the glow of the most wonderful wife a man ever hope and pray for.