OK, will somebody please pinch me? I need to wake up! I’m looking out my window this morning and see 1° with a windchill -10 degrees below zero. How can that be? This is southern Illinois? We have entire winter seasons pass with nothing but a trace of snow. So, even though this IS WINTER, it's so extreme and unusual to have it happening right here in Southern Illinois. Normally, this time of year my mind goes the return of longer days and getting ready for that first (albeit early) spring mowing. Instead, I’m finding myself bundling up with double sweaters long pants, boots and stocking cap (heaven forbid) to go out and insure my seldom used snow blower will still kick over. You see, I purchased one years ago but with the rare thought of ever really needing to use it. You see, where I am originally from, it would be quite normal to have snow blowers and shovels being used quite regularly between October and April.
As it turns out, it looks like southern Illinois if going to get clobbered tonight.! Up north I was quite accustomed to hearing forecasts calling for partly cloudy skies and I end up shoveling 7 inches from of my driveway. I’m not complaining. It’s expected in the northlands. But, not down here in the land of Giant City and Garden of the Gods. However, let’s be realistic and optimistic. Things happen for a reason. Seasons change and homeowners are quite fortunate to have the opportunity to experience every type of weather out there! Never wanting it to be severe, but always enjoying the change. So, I’ll sharpen my blade, pull out my shovel and make sure the snow blower engine ignites. Because, for whatever the reason, you’ll see me out shoveling my driveway while neighbors around me will stay warm inside. That’s because they know this is Southern Illinois and of course you know what they say; what happens today will change by tomorrow. And, I don’t necessarily disagree with that. But, being born in an area where ice skating rules and toboggins are a dime a dozen, a good snowstorm every now and then is very exciting.
So, wherever you find yourself today and tomorrow, just remember in a few months we will all be lamenting about the heat and humidity. So, my advice for you is to grab a cup of hot chocolate, open Netflix and do a little binging! Rest easy, stay safe, warm and off the road and enjoy this rather unique Southern Illinois winter event. But, if you do venture out, be sure to honk and wave at that fool, bundled from head to toe clearing his driveway!