That’s Fahrenheit, Not Celsius

It was cold this morning. 23 frosty degrees. I realize in some parts of the country that might be considered downright balmy, but in the Pacific Northwest, that’s about as cold as it ever gets. I’m going on my 20th winter here, and I speak from experience: it drops into the teens occasionally, and once bottomed out at 12 degrees, but in many winters it doesn’t get any colder. So, when the alarm clock went off this morning at 4:50, I was anything but pleased. Our bed was so warm…so soft…so comfy. Nothing but cold awaited us out of the covers. The last thing in the world I wanted to do was leave that warm and cozy haven, but we have been making an effort to attend the gym more regularly, so I forced myself to get up.

Proof of our arctic blast.
Proof of our arctic blast.

And proceeded to grumble incessantly to Tara.

“It’s 25 degrees!” I told her after consulting the thermometer in the kitchen.

“Hmm,” she replied, not sounding all that impressed. She was no more enthusiastic when the temperature inched down to 24, and then 23. I, on the other hand, was conveying this information to her excitedly, as if relaying a play-by-play in an NFL game in which the wide receiver was racing down to the 30-yard line…then the 20…the 10…

When she had the nerve to yawn in my face.

“What are you doing?!” I asked.
“Yawning,” she replied. Duh.
“Did you see the frost on the rooftops?”
“Yeah. Sure. I guess.”

Yeah? Sure? I guess?! It’s not every day that our rooftops are coated in frost. If you squinted your eyes and turned your head just the right way, it almost looked like snow, and that gave the whole neighborhood a Norman Rockwell feel. The only people who feel ambivalent over Normal Rockwell scenery are those who enjoy kicking puppy dogs for sport. Good lord. Who did I marry here?!?!

Oh. Right. The person who used to live in Island Park, Idaho. Where the average annual snowfall is 214.8 inches. No wonder a little frost on the rooftops was nothing to that wife o’ mine. OK, I get it…it’s all about perspective. I don’t blame her for calling me a “wimp” when I was shivering in the car on the drive to the gym, my teeth chattering in time to the rock ‘n roll music on the radio. So what I don’t understand is, why is she piling the blankets on when it’s 66 in the living room at the same time I’m peeling off layers of clothes because I’m burning up?! There’s no rhyme or reason to this madness.

They’re calling for this cold airmass to remain in place for a few more days, so I’m sure there will be more grumbling and more frosty roofs and more unimpressed Taras to contend with.

The cold weather did make me realize that Thanksgiving is only a week away. Which means, incessantly nonstop Christmas music is a mere 8 days away. How did that happen?! Up until a week ago, we weren’t even sure what we were doing for Turkey Day. Turns out we’re hosting. (Who am I kidding? I figured all along that’d be the case). Don’t get me wrong, I love hosting. It’s our one day of the year to show off our cooking prowess to a house full of guests.

But it’s our one day of the year to have to tackle a mountain of dirty dishes, too. And all the other cleanup afterwards. This is called “mixed feelings,” folks.

However, with the pending short sale and next year’s living situation up in the air, this year will probably be the last Thanksgiving in the townhouse. So that’s kind of bittersweet. Only seems fitting that we’d host again this year. We may be living in an apartment a year from now, and relying on somebody else to do all the work. Hint, hint…somebody else.

Anybody else.

What’cha doing for Thanksgiving next year, Tori Nelson? I hear the South is nice…

15 thoughts on “That’s Fahrenheit, Not Celsius

  1. Oh Mark, I’m actually envious of your 23 frosty degrees because it feels more like Spring is around the corner here, rather than Winter. The weather here has been so strange. Last week it was so warm, I actually saw people with SHORTS and FLIP-FLOPS! However, yesterday the temps. dropped considerably (high 40’s). But of course, I’m the only one LOVING it, everyone else is complaining. I’m still waiting for our first REALLY good snowfall!!!!! 🙂

    Yes, can you believe Thanksgiving is just a week away? Last year at this time I was in Florida. This year, I’ll probably be having dinner with a friend of mine at our favorite diner, and then I’m coming home and going to bed early. Because the next day is BLACK FRIDAY.

    PRAY for me 😦


    1. I feel for you, Ron. As a veteran of Black Friday myself (retail division, 1989-1992) I have been right there in the trenches and experienced the ugliness firsthand. Good luck to you, sir. May you emerge victoriously in one piece.


  2. Yeah, that’s cold, alright. Brrrrrrrr. It’s 70 almost every day here. Hard to beat. I have to admit, however, that I’m kind of missing a chill in the air this time of year. I like my holiday season cold and snowy. Oh, well.

    Happy Thanksgiving to you and Tara.

    Hugs from Ecuador,


    1. Is your temperature pretty stable year round, Kathy? Your town is so beautiful, I bet it would look stunning beneath a fresh snowfall. But are you too close to the equator to receive snow? I’d miss the chill in the air, too!


  3. That’s cold anywhere my friend! Hi we’re new to your site by way of mutual blogging bud Carrie Rubin. We’ve spent some time knocking around your blog & enjoyed it thoroughly. We did have a question for ya. It’s a dream of ours to move to the Pacific Northwest. Washington. But we assumed because of the pictures we’ve seen. (Mountains) more specifically, that there we’re extremely cold winters, with lots of snow. Is there? You sounded as though that temperature was strange. We live in the Smoky Mountains and “low-twenties” is pretty norm for a winter temp here. However, one of our friends told us that our mountains looked like mole hills compared to the ones in Washington. We figured higher elevation meant colder winters. (which we love) So….can you see our dilemma. If you wouldn’t mind we would love to hear back from you & to clarify. Thx so much! 🙂


    1. Welcome, and thank you for the comments! I love Washington, and it’s definitely beautiful. We’re surrounded by mountains that do make the ones on the east coast look more like bumps in the ground. But, most of the cities in western Washington are situated at sea level. If you like gray, cloudy days and lots of rain, you’ll love it here. If you’re looking for cold and snow, not so much. We usually see at least a few snowflakes in the air once or twice every winter, but they often don’t amount to much. If we get 2-3″ the city shuts down because nobody is used to dealing with that. The nice thing is, the mountains are a short drive away, so there are plenty of opportunities to go scratch your snow itch without waiting for a blizzard to come roaring through (because that NEVER happens). And the temperatures are very mild. Highs in the 40s, lows in the 30s are typical in the winter months. Summers are very dry and unlike the East Coast, we’ve got no humidity. Expect 80s during the day, 50s-low 60s at night. Hope that helps!


  4. I knew you would be excited about this cooler weather and honestly, I couldn’t be happier..frost and all. After that unbearable summer…oh wait…YOU had air-conditioning…what am I thinking?!?

    Hoping you and Tara and the family have a very blessed Thanksgiving. I’ll miss you both!!


    1. It IS pretty nice having A/C during the summer! Sure hope wherever we end up living next has it.

      Wish you were coming down for Thanksgiving still. It would have been nice having our families together. Oh, well…maybe next year.


  5. No matter what you do for Thanksgiving (this year or next), I hope it’s fabulous! I’m going to relish in the fact that it’s the first time in 6 years where I’m not working black friday and I plan on sleeping in. cheers!


    1. I remember how down you were about working Black Friday, and I don’t blame you one bit. Been there, done that, sure as hell don’t miss it. I hope you have a great Thanksgiving this year, Jess!


  6. 23 degrees Celsius is a nice balmy day in Edmonton! I guess I can’t complain too much though. We have about 6 inches of snow, but we haven’t had any bone numbing temperatures yet – the worst it got was -20 degrees celsius. (which is -4 degrees F). I guess you can tell I finished my NaNoWriMo (around 30,000 words) since I’m finally reading all your Nov. posts.


    1. Congrats on finishing! That’s a big accomplishment. We have an “arctic blast” headed our way tonight, and it’s supposed to get really cold for the next week or so. Highs in the 30s, lows possibly into the teens. If it materializes, this will be the coldest weather since 2010. Or so they keep telling us.


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