Writer’s Block: Six More Weeks

By DINA ARÉVALO
Port Isabel-South Padre Press
editor@portisabelsouthpadre.com

February 5, 2015

DinaPhoto

Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow this week. And right on cue, the sunny skies we saw over the weekend dimmed into memory as dull gray clouds scuttled overhead, ushered in by a chill breeze.

If the plump, yet shy rodent is to be believed, we’ve got six more weeks of winter awaiting us still. And while his predictions prove correct less than half the time, today — this year — I think the little guy might be onto something. As I sit writing this column, I’m snuggled in a hooded sweatshirt. My feet are tucked into my boots, with hot pink and purple argyle-patterned socks stretching up to my knees. And I’m still cold!

But, as I’m sure many of our Winter Texan readers can attest to, we’re pretty fortunate here in the Valley. The spotty showers and stout winds we’ve seen over the past few weeks are hardly an inconvenience compared to some of the things friends who live farther north have had to deal with recently.

Here, we don’t have to worry about leaving our toasty beds an hour earlier than usual just so we can shovel a path through the snow from our driveways to the street. And while the salt in the air may leave a haze on the windows and windshields of our cars, we don’t have to worry about a salt-laden rime eating away at their undersides.

Yup, we’ve got it good. The water may be too cold to go swimming in, but there’s nothing to prohibit a nice walk on the beach. And speaking of the beach, there, too, are we fortunate. I may be biased, but I think we’re home to the best beach in Texas.

So, the chilly weather may be around for a little longer still, but it’s not such a bad thing. I actually relish the chance to wear all the whimsical long socks that are way too warm for any other time of the year. And soon enough we’ll be back at triple digit temperatures with the sun searing down relentlessly, longing for a day like today.

It’s all about looking at the brighter side of things. Earlier this year I wrote about making New Year’s resolutions to become more physically fit. One other resolution idea people often overlook is to be more mentally positive.

I may grumble in the mornings at the sudden rush of cool air when I push the blankets aside and try to shake the cobwebs of sleep from my mind, but there are things I love about this time of year, too. This is perfect “caldo weather,” as my mom would say. Also, though it may be too chilly for outdoor fun, a warm house is the perfect place for family to gather for a game of Lotería, or Mexican bingo. Sitting around a table with the tablas laid out in front of you, the room quickly fills with laughter and the weather is soon forgotten.

Six more weeks of winter, says Phil? I say, bring it on!

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