If You Can’t Say Something Nice…

Good morning readers, I know that some of you are waking up to temperatures in the mid-50s; others are waking up to temperatures below 0; and still others, in my neck of the woods, are waking up to temps in the teens with icy roads, spouses and kids who never made it home from work/school yesterday (but, hopefully, are safe and sound at work, school, or the houses of coworkers and friends).
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It is a difficult time for many, and I just want to be the first to send out the message that whatever you are dealing with, I hope that you are safe and sound.

 

I have no idea why, but bad weather brings out the competitive nature in many folks I know. I see a lot of Facebook messages and tweets in which people are calling others wimps, saying “welcome to the club” and even going so far as to explain how much stronger, tougher, smarter, etc. they are because they know how to drive in snow and ice.

I say congrats to all of you who live in parts of the country where snow and ice are common. Congratulations on learning to live in those conditions on a regular basis. I also congratulate the communities in which you live for having the government services in place to deploy a caravan of snow plows and de-icers.

I am at my home in icy metro Atlanta, safe and sound with my husband and kids. My parents and sister are also safe and warm in their homes.
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At the same time, in Atlanta, and some other areas of the South, spouses are stranded at work – some made it home last night, but only after 11 hours on icy and unsafe roads. In some cases, kids are still at school having, what I can only hope is a fun lock-in that will become a fun memory to tell in the future. Believe it or not, there are still people stranded in their cars more than 18 hours after leaving work.

Some have died, and others have been injured.

My thoughts go out to everyone, regardless of where you live, who may be suffering due to the crazy weather that has taken hold this January. I send you my support whether you are a rugged Northerner experiencing what you may describe as a slightly colder and snowier winter. I hope that this becomes just one more story, of many, to tell.

I send my thoughts and support to those in the South who may be experiencing something common in other parts of the country, but uncommon here. I hope that you and your family members all make it home safe and sound by this evening.

I have been checking Facebook more than usual today to get reports on family and friends, and I know that I am not alone.
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For most of us I hope that this day/month will pass, and become just another story we tell. In my area, it will take its place amongst the ice storm of 2011 and the spring break blizzard of 1993… and because I was born in Michigan, will also have a place in my memory alongside the blizzard of 1977.

However, instead of becoming competitive over something like the weather. Something completely out of our control. Let’s pull together and offer our support. If you are a Northerner or Midwesterner, offer words of support instead snide remarks. If you are a Southerner dealing with the unexpected, don’t get mad at the Northerners who simply don’t understand why this brings our part of the country to a standstill.

If you opened your home to someone who is stranded, I commend you. If you can offer blankets, food or water to someone stranded in their car, or at an office near your home, an office with nothing more than a vending machine (if that), I encourage you to do so. If all you have to offer are positive thoughts and prayers, then please serve them up regularly throughout the day.

I look forward to the sunshine that is already returning, and to a thaw that will bring our temps all the way up to the 60s this weekend.

Please tell us how you are weathering the weather in 2014.


Comments

  1. says

    I had many friends and relatives stranded on the highways last night, and others who finally did make it home after many hours on the road. It is an unusual time in Atlanta. Even so, it is not something that we know really how to deal with down here, but our neighbors to the north shouldn’t be making fun of a tragic time. We certainly did not make fun of them in New Jersey when they experienced a terrible hurricane. Let’s just get along and help each other out here.

  2. says

    In the past I’ve poked fun at newscasters in California who talk about a “cold snap” when the weather gets below 60. But growing up in Texas, I know how difficult it makes things when it’s actually cold and there’s precipitation. People near me in Colorado forget that the South doesn’t get weather like our winters as often as we do, so there’s not the same infrastructure investment in de-icers and the like. Coupled with a population that doesn’t know how to drive in snow and ice, and it really is a very dangerous situation. My thoughts go out to everyone in Atlanta especially, but all those in the South struggling through the cold.
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    • says

      Thanks for your words of support. Looks like things won’t really get back to normal in ATL until next week (some school systems are closing Friday, too).

      I completely understand a bit of joking around, but it surprises me how competitive and nasty the social media comments get. Surviving weather systems is not a competitive sport – it is just something we all hope to get through without injury.

  3. says

    This year, the weather has been at its worst for the longest time. Indiana has endured a couple of snow storms for the past month. The weather is okay now, but they say that we should expect at least 10 inches of snow by Tuesday. I wish spring will hurry up! I can’t do cold weather at all. 🙁

    • says

      It has been crazy all over, hasn’t it?

      Several times in early January, I made the mistake of saying that the South was really dodging bullets with the snow and cold hitting everywhere else in the country. Even the cold temps from the “polar vortex” were nothing compared the what y’all were dealing with.

      Guess I jinxed us down here… maybe everyone should be blaming me instead of the schools, government, meteorologists, etc… 😉

    • says

      Glad y’all survived the weather. Seems like things are getting back to normal around here, I hope they are for you, too.

      I hope that the Atlanta-area school systems learn from this mistake and overcome their fear of snow days. Had school been canceled, 80% of the issues in Atlanta would have been solved.

  4. says

    I’m glad you and your family are safe. I definitely agree with what you are saying too. I’m in Orlando and when I post that it’s 30° I have so many saying they’d be in shorts or whatever. I’m sorry but 30 in Florida is freezing. No one realizes that being surrounded by salt water makes the air so bitter cold that it’s different that if it were 30 where they live. they also don’t understand that we have thin blood and we don’t have clothing for cold weather like this so yes, we’ve been dying in our “not cold at all” weather.

    • says

      AGREED! I met my husband while living in Seattle, and dragged him back to the South a few years after we married. People around here laugh at him because he walks around in a short sleeved shirt and fleece vest when it is in the 40s, and everyone here is wearing heavy coats and gloves. As long as the jokes are good-natured, I don’t mind, It’s the mean-spirited comments that bother me.

      Of course, on the flip side, he had no IDEA what a thunderstorm really was until moving South.

      Oh – and many of the people living up North wouldn’t have a clue what to do with the tropical FL weather. As a matter of fact, we are headed down there in a few weeks, and I am a bit sad to see that it might be in the 80s (I like the 60s best of all). Of course, seeing that just hits home what a difference it is for y’all to deal with 30 degree temps.

      Keep warm – hopefully winter won’t hit us with any more surprises (fingers crossed).

  5. says

    It can be hard for those of us who live in areas of the country with drastic weather changes through the course of the year to understand how for other parts of the country with milder weather changes a cold spell can wreak havoc on things. All, I know is that I felt bad for all my warmer climate friends who were faced with something unfamiliar that caused so much chaos for many. I think y’all did great though in the south through the nasty weather. Hoping you don’t have it happen again though.
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  6. says

    I agree people can be nasty about stuff like that! Here in the Southern Hemisphere it is pretty hot but we are lucky to have a pool to cool off in. When you get to Thursday you can read my scary moment when my toddler fell in the pool the other day, apart from that we enjoy the weather!

  7. says

    I’m not sure where the competitive nature comes from but I think people are becoming a little stir crazy! I know I am. I live in Cleveland where winter is winter. But we have had an exceptionally rough winter so I know it is getting to people.

  8. says

    We live in Memphis and New Orleans, and sometimes I think people just don’t understand how differently the weather affects the South – so many of the houses in NO aren’t even insulated. I join you in your positive thoughts and prayers.

  9. says

    Hope you can stay nice and warm! I have been inspired by watching how so many have reached out to others to help them in this time of need. Very encouraging!

  10. says

    Horrible to hear how some are suffering. In the UK south everyone from the north laughs in the same way when things in the south grind to a halt when it snows, but for a few weeks a year, we just never have to deal with it.

    Thankfully this year we’ve had little snow if any from the Midlands to the south, but it’s been flooding galore in the south west, and central south areas. Some areas have been underwater since last month, with farm animals and people being evacuated. We’re ok as no rivers near here, and even the canal has been ok, but further south has been bad and getting worse still,

    #SITSBlogging

  11. says

    You are so right. I’m in the South as well, and when the folks in the North East get a hurricane, everyone in Louisiana rolls their eyes, but when snow comes, the shoe is on the other foot. The fact of the matter is that bad weather is tough when it’s something your infrastructure is not used to. Wise words. Found you via SITS!

  12. says

    My heart goes out to everyone suffering from this year’s crazy winter Snowmageddon. I’m up in Missouri where we expect snow and ice and have a “snowpocolypse” at least once every year. To be honest, I don’t feel better than anyone else for being able to ‘tough it out’. I just want it to end! Stay safe and sane until Spring!

    -coming from the Comment Love Tribe

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