View from Mattie’s Pillow

Still deep cold. The weather forecasters are predicting warming trends in three days, but experienced Alaskans have seen this phenomenon before: the cold drags on, we get discouraged, the forecasters try to lift our spirits by predicting a break in the weather in three days; this can go on for weeks. So we’re in that part of the cold spell.

At this point, after this much cold, the effort it takes to do anything begins to seem normal. The car needs to be plugged in for an hour before turning it on, then it needs to be warmed up enough that the heat inside the car melts the ice around the gas pedal, then when we drive off, we move slowly, bumping along on flat-sided tires. Going into and out of the coffee shop involves a comical amount of taking off and putting on mittens, gloves, scarves, hats, layers of jackets and sweaters, snow pants. And we make foolish mistakes-taking our gloves off to adjust the buckles on the horse blanket can lead to cold fingers and cold fingers can frostbite. After being inside or driving through ice fog all day, we decide to walk the dog at night. The dry air makes skin itch, makes sparks of static snap between people and dogs, people and partners. We snap, too, as little irritations itch at the space between us.

So, I look at seed catalogs, the luscious colors of beets, cantaloupes, carrots, lettuce. In three days, they say, we’ll be above zero-maybe above freezing (but don’t count on it).

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2 Responses to “View from Mattie’s Pillow”

  1. Jessa Says:

    Oh how poetically true of Alaska. It always amazes me how irritated people get the more they are locked indoors. The whole cabin fever thing is so far from a myth it amazes me! I never would have imagined, back in Oregon, how much it wears on the human psyche to be stuck indoors, unable to bear the cold outside. But at least those forecasters are telling us it’ll end in false three days! Although we all just look forward to break up…

  2. mattiespillow Says:

    Hi, Jessa. Glad you found my blog. I hope you take up one of the poetry challenges! I’ll post more.

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