The thermometer on our deck read 9 degrees Fahrenheit when we awoke this morning. Outside, the coating of snow that arrived on Friday night gleams in the sun, unmelted, defiant. This afternoon at 3, just before writing this, I again consulted the deck thermometer: 30 degrees. Still below freezing. Forecasters predict that a warmup will begin tomorrow afternoon. By the end of the week, we could see temperatures approaching 70. 70 in January? Ridiculous.
Not yet, though. Friday’s snow still lies atop a crust of ice that remains on driveways and many streets and roads. Highways are clear for the most part, but black ice coats them in many spots at night, threatening even the most careful driver. Hoofprints in the snow on our driveway and white-blanketed lawn attest to the after-dark visits of deer in search of something to eat.
When we moved to North Carolina 40 years ago, we left behind a home in the warm southern end of Florida with a pool in our back yard. A cold day there meant temperatures had fallen into the 60s. Here, we have enjoyed changing seasons, open-window springtimes, respectably hot summers, crisp fall evenings, a few light snowfalls now and then to remind us that such things are possible even in the South. All good. But single digits? Too cold for me.
Another reason to look forward to March Madness. Our driveway should be clear by then.