It wasn't too long ago I embarked upon an adventure to a wondrous northern land filled with shimmering lights and Elmo impersonators, New York. Here I found a bustling city, a city that truly never sleeps, and accompanying this I discovered something I never experienced in Florida, the horrors of winter. As I left the plane, the icy grasp of winter clawed at my skin, I felt a type of cold I'd never felt before. It was a biting cold, the type that seeps into your bones and renders you helplessly rubbing together your hands. It leaves you heaving whatever hot air is left in your lungs unto your hands in a sorry attempt to preserve the warmth you still have left.
So here you find yourself, a Floridian, finding a place of warmth to de-thaw, swearing to whatever higher power you believe in that you will leave better prepared, so you layer, double layer, heck perhaps even triple layer. Feeling confident, you leave and brace for the cold, only to realize you are a fool. The three thin sweaters you equip like armor, perfect for the consistently warm and muggy temperatures of Florida, betray you. The cold winds rip through layers like tissue paper, Jack Frost cackling in the background as you curse the numerous times you wished for the cold. Not long after you realize you can no longer feel your hands, your lips feel like plump, icy pillows on your face, your ears stinging in pain from the bristling chill. The Floridian needs no gloves, no scarfs, no beanies, so it being forgotten is unsurprising.
You see, winter wear is more of an aesthetic than a necessity in Florida. F The need for warm clothes is, at most, sweats and a jacket. These will usually get broken out the minute it gets below 70 degrees. In case you, the reader, are not from Florida, the memes of Floridians during our "winter" are absolutely true.
Also, snow. Wow. Snow is magical and horrible. I'm accustomed to heat waves, the little squiggles in the sky, but not snow. When I saw those delicate white flakes falling from the sky, it was a picturesque moment, and then it fell apart the minute one of those flakes hit my clothes. I realized these little flakes stick to your clothes, and are incredibly cold, and then melt, and then leave you soaked. The piles of snow that line the streets after it snows was something I'd never seen before. At first, I thought it looked cool, and then I realized that as I kept looking at the snow piles day-by-day I realized they got more misshapen and dirtier and realized how much of a nuisance they must be. I'll keep my heat waves and alligators, thanks.
Let this be a warning and a fun learning experience from a dramatic Floridian, winter is different outside of Florida. When you step foot outside our humble swamp you find the harsh winters of the rest of the U.S and beyond to be nearly unbearable. Appreciate the climate you come from, you may not realize you live in a paradise.