Let it Snow

Hey y’all,

I’m sure everyone has been wondering why I have yet to post about the DRASTIC differences in winter weather from the North to the South. Well here it finally is. I’ve finally turned the heat on in my house and begrudgingly stored my summer tops, short, and flip flops under my bed in preparation for Mother Nature’s chilly appearance. As there is nothing I can do now except wait for the white.

Snow

When I use to think of snow, a few things came to mind:

  • Snowmen
  • Snow angels
  • Sledding
  • Catching snowflake on my tongue

Now I think of:

Car being pushed out of the snow. Photo by Shane Epping

Car being pushed out of the snow.
Photo by Shane Epping

  • My car getting stuck in the parking lot
  • Shoveling just to open my front door
  • FREEZING
  • My gas and electric bill sky rocketing

Moving to Wisconsin has given me a new perspective on what I use to pray for on Christmas morning. Snow is probably my least favorite aspect of Wisconsin. The average snowfall in Tennessee is nothing compared to the average snowfall in Wisconsin. It only took one semester at Whitewater for the idea of a “winter wonderland” to become a nightmare. Prepare yourself my southern friends.

Wait, we have to go outside?

One of the biggest adjustments I had to make when moving to the north was going to school in the snow. In Tennessee, school is cancelled if there is even a possibility of snow. And if it actually snows, the whole town shuts down for at least 24 hours, but for good reason.

First off, no one at home knows how to drive in the snow. If it flurries, everyone drives approximately five miles per hour. Along with this, we have horrible plowing systems and putting salt on the roads is a foreign concept. No one knows how to handle winters, so we simply don’t. We sit inside with hot cocoa by the furnace and watch the glitter fall. Wisconsin handles things a little differently.

Not only is it unacceptable to drive five miles per hour when it’s snowing (trust me, people WILL honk), you are also expected to go to work/school/practice in NEGATIVE DEGREE WEATHER. Every winter I am faced with the decision of walking to class in -15 degree weather with wind chill and a blizzard outside or annoying everyone by driving in slow motion to class with my hands gripped as tightly to the steering wheel as possible in fear of sliding (In my defense, my license plate says Tennessee…people should understand).

I’ve come to terms with the fact that I can’t skip class every timethe temperature drops below 32 degrees, but I still struggle taking that first step out the door in the morning during winter.

Advice

The winters can be brutal, but I’ve learned a few helpful tricks that have proved invaluable in the past few winters.

The brand of salt I use on my outdoor steps.

The brand of salt I use on my outdoor steps.

  • Bundle up…I mean it. Layers on layer on layers.
  • Always keep salt on the walkway by your house/apartment…especially if there are stairs
  • Get shoes with traction
  • Keep a blanket and phone charger in your car at all times
  • Insulate your windows
  • Never underestimate the power of a cup of hot cocoa, coffee, or hot tea

One of the things I still struggle with is driving and getting stuck in the snow, but I have found this article to be particularly helpful!

The winters here are rough, and I must admit, I have yet to fully adjust to the constant cold. However, as long as you prepare yourself ahead of time….you’ll survive. Or as my roommate likes to say every time it snows, “it’s time for hibernation.”

Until next time,

Hannah

NEXT WEEK: Southern Stereotypes

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