Monday, 11 January 2010

Brass Monkey weather

A former colleague of mine is a weather freak. He watches the weather channel on T.V. for hours at a time, subject to the wisdom of his good wife!

And the weather has been a talk of the town here in south west Florida. We are experiencing the coldest “cold snap” in so many years. It’s been tough for citrus and strawberry growers, and even tougher for homeless people.

Here in SRQ it got down to 29f (-1c) early this morning. That’s cold for Floridians, native or immigrant. We immigrants retired here to escape the cold of winter!

Of course our chilly temperatures are “nothing” compared with the low temps in most of the northern hemisphere, and we do not have to contend with snow or icy roads. And we are glad that the cold night temperatures give way to balmier ones in day time. It reached 61f (16c) mid-afternoon today.

When I moved to Florida “they” told me that my “blood would thin”, and that after a few years I would begin to feel even mild winter cold. That’s not been the case. I walked for a mile with my dog Penne this morning at 7:00 a.m., when it was 29f (-1c). With a hat, gloves, and the super all-wool top coat which I bought in Massachusetts a year before I retired, I was quite comfortable. In fact I was enjoying the brisk air.

The same was not true last Saturday (9th January 2010.) It was a dreary, rainy and cloudy day with temps that did not exceed 40f (4.5c). The damp air made it seem much colder.

It reminded me of cold winter days in England, in particular of a trip I took home in 1980 or 1981.

At that time I was Vicar at St. Christopher’s Church in Chicopee, MA. I had decided to fly home to England for Christmas. Duty called, so I could not leave Chicopee until Christmas Day.

I'd had booked a British Airways flight from Boston to London, but it was canceled. Therefore I had to fly (on Christmas Day) Boston – New York City – London.

British Airways had assured me that I would be able to use their JFK airport’s Executive Club for my 7/8 hour layover at J.F.K. before the overnight flight to London Heathrow.

On Christmas Day a good St. Christopher’s parishioner drove me as far as Worcester, MA, from where my pal Paul Goranson drove me to Logan Airport in Boston.

My flight from Boston to New York was fine, but I was chagrined to discover that the Executive Club was closed on that Christmas Day!  Hanging around JFK airport is not fun!

In due course I arrived on Boxing Day in London from where I was driven down to Bristol for a one day late celebration of Christmas, at the home of my sister Maureen and her husband, Bernard. After a “cuppa” I tried to catch “40 winks”, but was soon disturbed by two of my nephews, Daniel and Michael? or maybe David and Robert? , who were excited to see their “American” uncle.

Of course the trip was worthwhile. But in my tired state I fell asleep at the dinner table. Some family member or other used my camera to “snap” me in this somnolent state. It was not until I returned back to the U.S.A. and had the film developed and printed, (remember those old days when we took 35mm films to the local pharmacy/chemist shop for processing!), that I saw the photo’. I had been too deep in sleep to know that it had been taken.

The temperatures in Bristol that December/January were most likely in the area of 40f (4.5c), (much warmer than those in Massachusetts). But even by Dec 30th I thought that my feet would never warm up.

I think that was all due to the moist air, and that’s certainly how my body felt on damp and dreary Saturday 9th January here in “sunny” Florida.

(If you do not “get” the “Brass Monkeys’” reference I will spare your blushes!)

1 comment:

  1. 100% correct. The damp cold weather gets into your joints & bones whilst the "brisk cold" that you talk of seems somehow to invigorate & liven. I guess we should all move to Alaska.