Gray and Cold

As regular readers of this blog are aware, I spent the better part of thirteen years in Vietnam during the war and became completely acclimatized to tropical weather. Like most Americans in Southeast Asia, I wore as few clothes as possible and stayed tan year-round. During my brief trips back to “the world”—that’s what we called the U.S.—I suffered from the cooler climate, and after the fall of Saigon in April, 1975, when I returned fulltime, I found it downright inhospitable.

Despite having lived in the U.S. ever since and having travelled extensively “on business”—on missions for the U.S. government—I have never reacclimatized. No longer tan, I have, nevertheless, retained my preference for hot weather and my dislike for the cold.

For me, winters are misery. But come March, when times below freezing promise to disappear, my expectations of warm weather revive. On the occasional days when the sun is out and the temperature approaches 70 degrees, I’m all smiles. But throughout March and April, really warm weather is always in the offing, never quite arriving. Impatience, frustration, and disappointment become habitual. The gray and cold go on and on.

So here I am this morning with temperatures down to 26 degrees. I’m bundled up against the cold, relying on my gas fireplaces to stay somewhere approaching comfortable. Tolerable weather is apparently still more than a month off.

Here’s hoping I can stay civil until my heyday returns.

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