The News Desk is a collection of news, notes and breaking items affecting the Fredericksburg community.
We’ll miss this weather when winter arrives
BY ROB HEDELT
As I write this column, on Friday morning, I’m soaked.
Not a little damp or dewy, mind you.
But shirt-sopped, hair-soaked, sweat running down my everything wetted.
I simply walked the relatively short hop from Little Tire near U.S. 1 to the newspaper office here on William Street, probably no more than a half-mile.
At 9 in the morning, it should have been a cakewalk.
It started out OK, shuffling along the sidewalk on Princess Anne Street, ducking into the shade whenever possible.
But by the time I’d gotten 10 blocks, it was clear the heat and humidity—our constant friends this summer—had me looking like I’d walked under a lawn sprinkler.
Now, I’m a summer lover, and in the midst of winter, there’s nothing that seems more grand than the notion of cruising around on a balmy day in shorts and flip–flops.
But a funny thing happens to us fickle folk when we get what we want, especially when we get it to the nth degree.
We start hankering for exactly the opposite, dreaming of cool breezes and even tall drifts of snow.
Never mind the fact that as soon as summer weather is gone, we’ll wish for days when a warm sun is all we need to stay comfy, making coats and thick socks unnecessary.
No, right now, we’ve had so much unrelenting hot weather, and so few rainy days to provide a respite from it, that our brains and psyches are cooked.
When Labor Day arrives Monday, we’ll at least figuratively have made the turn to fall. Thankfully, the weatherman says cooler days are just around the corner.
Indeed, many predictions have the winter bringing a banner snow year.
Sitting here sopped this morning, that seems like a really good thing.
Even if it would get old after the first few deluges.
Growing up, the only thing I knew about hurricanes were the stories family members told me about Hazel and a few other storms.
Thanks to the ever-present cacophony of nonstop news and weather channels, every time someone in the country has a hurricane, we all experience it.
Maybe that’s a good thing, because it helps us realize how serious these storms are.
Our experiences with Isabel, Irene and some nasty tropical storms in the past 10 years have made the monster storms all too real. I still vividly remember seeing rain fall sideways during Isabel in 2003, having to take a boat to a relative’s house in Westmoreland County, and all the devastation from high winds and water.
Maybe that’s why the non-stop coverage strikes such a chord.
Let them miss us, let the gentle rains eventually arrive and let sweetly cool fall breezes last until a sweet dusting of snow falls the day before Christmas.
Hey, I can dream, can’t I?
Rob Hedelt: 540/374-5415