At least we’re not in Massachusetts

Published 8:17 pm Saturday, January 29, 2011

There’s a good chance that I’ve written about this before, but there’s something about southeastern Virginia’s climate that always gives me hope. Just when it seems as if we will never get a break from the plodding days of cold, wet weather during the winter, a day like Saturday comes around.

Looking outside Saturday morning, I saw that the sky was a perfect shade of blue, giving a fine contrast to the gray-white dome that has covered the area for what seems like weeks now. I had work to do, but I couldn’t stand the thought of sitting inside at the computer and missing it, so I grabbed my laptop and headed for the patio.

It’s one of my favorite places to work.

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Outside on Saturday, I wrote and edited some things for today’s paper as I listened to the sound of birds carrying on in the yard, gathering food for the day and preparing their nests for the spring.

They’re still not as active as they will be in a month or so, but the knowledge that life goes on amidst the frozen decay of winter gives my spirit a lift. The brief respite that a day like Saturday provides from what has been a particularly harsh Tidewater winter is one of my favorite things about this area.

A friend in Massachusetts told me the other day that his town has received 50 inches of snow this month. His snowblower can no longer lift the snow from his driveway above the seven-foot snowbanks he has piled up on either side in an effort to keep it clear.

I like snow, but I must agree with the 50 percent of respondents to a recent poll we ran who said that our winter weather was nice for a while, but now they’re over it. I’m ready for leaves to start turning green, for babies to appear in those nests and, yes, for temperatures to rise into the 60s. Winter, it seems, has almost gotten the best of me this year.

Fortunately, the break that we had on Saturday renewed my hope that spring is just around the corner once again. I know that we’ll have more cold weather before that happens — and probably more snow — but God gave me a little taste this weekend of what’s in store for us soon.

I can wait. And I can thank Him for living in Virginia, and not in Massachusetts.

res spears is the editor of the Suffolk News-Herald. He can be reached at 757.934.9616 or at