THREE CHEERS FOR THE FOUR SEASONS by ELLIN CURLEY

It’s getting cold in Connecticut. The winter is late in coming this year, but now it’s definitely here. My husband is mourning the end of the warm weather. He is also missing his boat, which we just took out of the water to be shrink wrapped for winter.

On the other hand, I’ve just happily switched my closet from summer to winter clothes. I’m actually looking forward to wearing my favorite sweaters. I love boots and I feel very fashionable when I can wear high boots over my jeans. Another thing I look forward to in winter is coats and scarves. I have a terrific wardrobe of colorful, textured scarves, many purchased at craft shows over the years.

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I love the variety of clothing the seasons provide. I’d get sick of wearing the same clothes all year. If I lived in Florida or California, in order to get variety, I’d probably spend a fortune each year buying clothes. Now I spend very little on clothes because the four seasons (really three – winter summer and in between) give me ample variety in my wardrobe.

Another reason I don’t mind winter – once you put on your beautiful outerwear, you’re not cold outside. People talk about the horrors of winter as if you had to go outside everyday wearing nothing more than your pajamas! Snow is wonderful if you’re dressed to play in it and enjoy its beauty.

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I have to confess that I am not a heat lover. In fact, I get physically ill in severe heat. For me, it’s worse when it’s very hot than when it’s very cold. I can’t protect myself from the heat outside by removing layers of clothing. I can only go down to tee-shirt, shorts, or a bathing suit without getting arrested for indecent exposure. If I’m still roasting in those outfits, I’m screwed.

But in winter, you can always put on more sophisticated winter wear. For example, you can put on ski clothes and go out and ski down a mountain in the freezing cold.

So I dislike the heat and can stay warm in cold weather.

What else do I like about the seasons? The variety itself enhances my life. I appreciate spring and summer because I been through fall and winter. I don’t take green trees and flowers for granted because I live through colored leaves, bare trees, and the winter wonderland of snow-covered landscapes. I wouldn’t want to live in winter all year any more than I’d want to live in summer full-time.

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For the three months winter lasts, I appreciate it. We love the fires in the hearth on winter nights. Tom and I enjoy our Jacuzzi more in winter. Friends seem to have more time to come over and hang out in the winter, maybe because they’re not outside doing whatever they do in summer. Like playing golf, swim, take long walks, go on hikes, work in their gardens, and all that outdoorsy stuff.

I’m also lucky because I love where I live. I don’t dream of moving somewhere else. If I did, it would probably be to another place with four seasons. I just can’t imagine a life without watching the leaves turn red, yellow and orange in Autumn. I can’t imagine a life without getting to watch grass grow, flowers bloom and leaves suddenly burst out on trees. Every single year. I can’t imagine everything in my environment staying the same year in and year out.

I’m happy dealing with a world that changes. And now, it is changing again. Winter has arrived … with the promise of spring to come.

12 thoughts on “THREE CHEERS FOR THE FOUR SEASONS by ELLIN CURLEY

  1. The thing I missed the most in Israel were the seasons. When you grow up in a four-season (or, as you say, three-season) climate, it’s part of the rhythm of life. Life and the seasons are inextricably linked and as fall came around, I desperately missed autumn. Summer in Israel is very long and the sky is cloudless and blue every day for weeks at a time. When the rare cloud passed over, people would stand around pointing and taking pictures. You almost never saw clouds. Summer ended when winter came. No autumn. I remember one year, I was outside talking to a neighbor. We looked up and saw a line of dark clouds advancing. We raced home to take in the laundry from the lines. Winter had arrived. Fifteen minutes later, it WAS winter.

    I never really got used to the heat of summer. Or the intensity of the sun. Any number of people pointed out that if I didn’t like heat and sun, I was in the wrong country. Eventually, I agreed and came home.

    I love the seasons. What I hate is the extremely heavy snow we get here in this valley. Snow is fine, but 12 feet of it is a LOT. And our driveway could pass for a bunny slope and I get weary of being unable to get out of the driveway. Hopefully, with the new Jeep, winter will be easier this year. But I would also appreciate not quite such an intense winter. I don’t think you get quite as much snow as we do, even though you don’t live so far away.

    A lot of women have trouble handling heat. I do too. I feel like I can’t breathe. I’ve heard the same thing from quite a few women. Maybe it’s that extra layer of fat we have that men don’t have. We are better insulated.

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    • Good point about women having trouble with heat. More women I know have issues than men. But I have a physiological problem with sweating – my body can’t do it. So all the heat stays locked up inside of me and I look great but feel like I’m going to pass out all the time. I really feel sick when I get too hot. I stay in air conditioning as much as possible all summer so I miss out on all the outdoor fun people seem to have.

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  2. I’m with Tommy on the passing of warm weather. Now, ya gotta wear socks, sweaters, glubs and heavier jackets. Speaking of glubs, I think I have enough to offset the ones I lose. I have a blood flow problem in my hands so I need to wear glubs in cold weather. Oh, another thing. I hate having to clean off the snow and ice from the cars. Driving is another issue for another day. We have a thin layer of the white (blatantly racist?) stuff today. We have a pahty tomorrow requiring a bit of drive. I hope the roads are okay.

    I know Marilyn loves autumn. It IS a beautiful season. This past autumn was a classic. Still, I’m a summa guy. Summa with boat shoes, shorts, tee shirts and beisbol. I didn’t even get a chance to work on my tan this year.

    Wait til next year.

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    • If you love summer, you still get to have it in a place with 4 seasons. You just don’t get it all the time, which even for you, might get boring. You can still stay warm in the winter, you just have to put on extra clothes. I think that may be the key to winter haters – they’re lazy and don’t want to have to take the time to put on all those annoying winter layers. That’s a common anti seasons theme – I can just walk out of the house. I don’t have to worry about outer clothes. Except that I have to take a sweater or jacket with me wherever I go in hot climates because the air conditioning inside is so extreme! And the contrast between the hot outside and freezing inside gives me colds.

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      • I think for us it’s the back-breaking labor part of it that’s the problem. For me, it’s the danger of falling and of course, that awful sloping driveway. It’s scraping the ice off windshields and shoveling off vehicles. Remember, we don’t have garages for the cars, so we live in a different universe.

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