It’s below freezing this morning. The weather is more like February than November. It’s clear, and the sun is shining. But when I went out to get the delivered Washington Post, I felt no warmth from the sun.
In past blog posts, I’ve talked about my dread of cold weather. Between 1962 and 1975, I spent more time in South Vietnam than I did in the U.S. So I became acclimatized to the tropical weather. Mean annual temperatures there are around 75 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit. During the coldest month with a mean temperature of 63 to 68 degrees, the locals all bundled up, while us westerners wore what was for us normal clothing—a short-sleeve shirt and long pants. And during the hottest months with a mean temperature of 84 to 86 degrees, we wore as little as possible.
In other words, it’s good and hot there. Days with temperatures in the nineties are common. People wear as few clothes as possible—for men, especially westerners, going shirtless is commonplace. After the end of the Vietnam war in 1975, when I returned permanently to the U.S., I chronically dressed as warmly as possible, even during the summer, and became all but immobilized by winter cold.
I never reacclimatized back to the cooler climes in the northeastern U.S. where I live. The onset of winter is a grim time for me. And this year, it is coming earlier than usual.
Dour times ahead.