Never Snow Again
When we got engaged, we bought a wedding planner and Josh wrote on the first page: “Mommy, what was it like to live above ground?” See, we were soooooo funny when we were in our twenties. We liked to joke that by the time our kids were interested in looking at our wedding planner, we would be living in an underground bunker because the earth would be uninhabitable.
That doesn’t seem to funny anymore.
Every morning when I go to wake up the kids, I peek out the window even though I know there hasn’t been snow in the forecast. Why do I do this? Wishful thinking? Disbelief?
I am a lifelong Marylander. We are owed snow days; it is our birthright. It is the promise our state makes to all residents: we will get snow AND we will be incapable of clearing said snow from roads. The tradeoff is the snow day. We get to stay home and not do anything in exchange for putting up with the fact that Maryland cannot obtain sufficient numbers of snow plows.
I like this system.
But this year, we haven’t gotten any snow days. Yes, there is snow in the forecast for Monday night, and people are running around, shrieking, because we could get anything from one inch to 400 feet of snow. But the Capital Weather Gang has gently reminded us like a patient, cardigan-wearing grandpa not to get ourselves too worked up. There is more of a chance for things to go wrong with this storm than for things to go right.
Sometimes you get a gut feeling on things: I just don’t think we’re going to see a school-cancelling amount of snow.
I am aware that there are plenty of people on earth who have never experienced snow in the same way that I am aware that there are plenty of people who have chosen not to live on either coast and therefore going to the ocean is a big deal or doesn’t happen at all.
But that’s not the choice we made. We made the choice to (1) live in a place that goes through all four seasons, (2) live within close proximity to the ocean, (3) live in a place that may get a little soupy in summer but is overall not too hot and not too cold.
The thing about global warming is that it’s entirely possible that some places will never see snow again. I’ve thought about ocean levels rising and flooding. I’ve thought about species dying out due to climate change. But I’ve never given a lot of thought to the idea of year after year without snow. While I know there are plenty of other people who live that way, it isn’t our norm. It’s unfathomable that we will have to travel to experience snow, something that used to fall down all around our house.
It makes me sad, first, but it also gives me the energy to fight the good fight and support the work of environmental groups to address global warming. Emissions are NOT going to take away my Maryland-snow-incompetence days, not if I can help it.