2015 Winter Champions

With 110.6 inches of snow on the books, Boston is the official champion of the 2015 winter season. I’m told it’s spring now—though I’m having trouble believing it for reasons that will soon become clear. But since winter 2015 is technically behind us, let’s take a look back at some of the city’s biggest plays during it’s record-shattering run, as well as my reactions…

January 24, 2015—First significant snowfall: OMG!!! Where have you been all winter, snow? Welcome! Welcome! So glad you finally made it!First_snow_2015

January 27, 2015—Blizzard #1: WEEEEE! I’ve never seen so much snow! Look how fast it’s coming down! The office is closed! Let’s go for a walk! And make snow ice cream! WEEEEE!first_boston_blizzard

February 2, 2015—Blizzard #2: Huh. Where’d this come from? No one said anything about a blizzard, but this is definitely worse than the one last week. Oh well, it’s still pretty cool. No way I’m walking to the office today though. Hey-o, workin’ from home.

February 8, 2015—Blizzard #3: My flight back to Boston from Dallas has been cancelled. Guess I’m going to have to weather this storm with Tex-Mex and Shiner. Next to my parents’ pool. For two days. Best blizzard ever!

February 15, 2015—Blizzard #4: Good thing it’s a Sunday? So work won’t be interrupted? And at least it looks pretty? Yup.

March 15, 2015—Record day: [early] It’s not snowing that hard. And it looks like it’s mostly rain. No way we break the record today. And to think, we came so close 🙁 [later] WE BROKE THE RECORD! WE BROKE THE RECORD! *high fives all around* 108.6 inches! We’re number one! Way to go, Boston!

Mass_state_house_winter

March 20-21, 2015—First two days of Spring: Why in the world is it snowing? And why won’t it stop!? We already broke the record. STOP SNOWING, damn you!

April 8, 2015—First April snow: We found it. This is frozen Hell.

Don’t get me wrong: I’m happy that my first winter in Boston was the snowiest ever. I moved up here for the new experiences, and winter delivered. For instance: I didn’t know feet of snow could fall every. single. weekend and just…not melt. Ever. I didn’t know what a “snow farm” was. I never would’ve imagined that commuting on the subway would be worse than commuting on the road in the winter. (So much worse.)

Plus, now I’m a survivor. I can wear 110 inches like a badge of honor. I can rest assured knowing that I’ll never experience another winter as bad as this one. I can use a bunch of swears because tomorrow’s high is 39 and did no one tell Boston that people aren’t meant to wear mittens after March? LORD.

Snow 101

The first snow of the season fell in Boston yesterday. Initially I was mildly horrified — I’m used to a little snowfall in late January or early February, but two days after Halloween? Get outta here! The weatherman said we wouldn’t get much — perhaps an inch or so — and I was shocked that he could be so blasé. An inch? That’s a shut-down-the-city storm! It started off as a rainy mix, but once the mess transformed into steady, swirling, fat flakes, my concern quickly faded and I found myself giddy to get out in it NOW, please.

The weather’s been pretty pleasant lately, so the snow didn’t have a chance of sticking. But it was very, very wet, and the wind was whipping around so ferociously that I started to second-guess my enthusiasm after just five minutes outside. (Imagine an having ice cream headache, but on the outside of your face. It’s…unpleasant.) But once the wind settled down and the snow stopped impaling me? It was actually really quiet and lovely. Fall colors have only just come out in force in Boston, so I ended up meandering around the city for close to an hour enjoying the damp chill and transformed views.

PublicGarden_Nov2014_E

By the time I started heading home, the snow had mostly let up, and I was sorry I wouldn’t get to watch it course past my window any longer. But something tells me I’ll have the chance again soon…

Mega hotties

Ever since my friend blew my ever-lovin’ mind four years ago with the revelation that the house she grew up in in Connecticut did not have central air, I’ve wanted to live in a house without central air, too. I mean, I hate being hot — I absolutely loathe it — but anyplace where air conditioning is not required is a place that’s probably not all that hot to begin with.

And that’s been…mostly true of Boston. The townhouse we live in was built in the 1860s, so we definitely do not have AC. It’s not designated as an historic building, which means we’re allowed to use window units if we want. But summers are so short here, and window units are clunky and kind of pricey, so we’re attempting to tough it out with only a portable fan.

I’d say 80% of the summer days so far have been manageable (low 80s) to downright cool (high of 70 last Sunday — WHAT). But the other 20% has made us question our resolve in a big, big way. We’re not talking Texas heat by any means — the highest temp we’ve seen was 93 — but OH, the humidity! I haven’t needed a snorkel to survive (yet) but I have had to learn some new tricks to keep from poaching inside my house:

  • Take multiple showers during the day. If I shower when I get up in the morning, I’m always sticky again a few hours later, and downright putrid by bedtime on hot days. (I’m pretty jealous that Sean gets to sit in an air-conditioned office all day.) Lukewarm showers to wash off the yuck and cool me down have become a favorite activity.
  • Buy all the bobby pins and hair ties. They say thick hair is a blessing in the winter, but right now my must-have accessory is my hair tie. Dirty, messy buns may not be the cutest style, but it’s the one I’ll be rocking every day until the fall.
  • Sleep with the windows open. Sweating through the night was our biggest fear when we decided not to buy a window unit. But thankfully it gets down into the 60s almost every night, so as long as our bedroom window is open and our fan is going, we’re pretty comfortable. (Although our comforter has been temporarily relocated to the closet. Don’t worry, comforter, it’ll be your turn to shine soon enough.)
  • Don’t cook. For the love of all that’s holy, don’t turn on the oven! I’ve done it a couple of times on super hot days and almost didn’t recover. The stovetop is less oppressive as long as I don’t spend a ton of time on prep (hello, boxed mac and cheese!); the microwave is better; takeout is my best friend.
  • Sit perfectly still. The trick to keeping relatively cool in a sweltering house is to plop down on the couch and not move a muscle for the rest of the day. No going to the bathroom or eating. Just sitting. You may eventually melt into the couch, but that should help facilitate the not moving.
  • Embrace the darkness. Overhead lights and open blinds are the enemy of cool. The lack of light sometimes makes my house feel like a pit of despair, but at least it’s a less hot pit.

The good news is that we’re almost over the hump. Word on the street is that July is the hottest month, so I’m crossing my fingers for only a few more gross days before we can put the heat behind us. (And then put on our parkas!)