Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Oh Groundhog, Where Art Thou?

February 12, 2008

The trip back from Kingston Sunday was a harbinger of Hoboken weather to come. I enjoyed The Fantasticks with my family -- even though I was sitting next to Andy, the ten-year-old, who squirmed mercilessly during the love songs, on Saturday. Afterwards, we ate in a very popular, very trendy Japanese place in the East Village and drove together to Kingston.

I had expected a little more feedback about the play on the 2-hour ride, but when that didn't happen my daughter and I had a nice time for a gabfest and the boys mostly slept.

Sunday the snowflakes fell in huge chunks, huge for snowflakes, that is; and I feared a difficult bus ride home. It turned out I had nothing to worry about as the weather cleared and the temperature was in the 40's, melting the accumulated snow and providing a nice, early-spring atmosphere. I hung around with the family until after lunch, leaving on the 3 P.M. bus.

The trip back should have been a warning to me. We drove through what I would have called a blizzard if I had not just enjoyed early spring. (I know February isn't spring, but indulge me here.) The snowflakes were so thick they obscured the view. It was almost like fog, it was so difficult to see. Trees frosted in white appeared and disappeared at the windows like ghosts, and the bus was slowed. Then by the time we reached the New Jersey shopping malls the weather was clear again. When I got off the bus all I had to do was walk across the Port Authority Terminal and take an escalator to the Hoboken bus, and I was home in 15 minutes.

The two-block walk from bus stop to house was when I got my shock. It was 27° in Hoboken, and destined to go down to 11 before the night was over. I've spent two days shivering and will have at least one more before the weather is bearable again.

I'm going to have to give myself time to get used to this. It's winter, and I have had 19 years of winters that you hardly notice. It's not like that any more. I feel like a stranger in my own land. Just a few more weeks of this and then we'll have spring, which I remember vividly. And as often as I can.


Nan said...

I'm going to sound so very small-town, :<) but is it a worry for you to ride the bus alone, and walk that two blocks? Would it be different if it were nighttime? In terms of winter, is this your first winter in Hoboken? It must be so different from Alabama. I've just re-read Rick Bragg's books, and there sure isn't much cold down there! My boy was in Midsummer in seventh grade, and played Peter Quince. So delightful!

Mary Lois said...

Certainly an understandable question! But Hoboken is very well patrolled, I guess, because there is little or no street crime. It feels like a small town too. Buses are seldom dangerous anywhere as far as I know.

A friend of mine, who is an older actress living in Hoboken, told me she took the bus to and from the city at all hours and never feels afraid.

Yes, it's my first winter in Hoboken, and my first winter in the North in 19 years. But today there is a layer of snow on the sidewalks and more coming down, and it's just beautiful! The prediction is for it to be followed by icy rain and for all of it to melt away by late tomorrow. I'll just stay inside and watch.

And Bottom! I'm so pleased. That's the best role in the play! Of course Peter Quince is a nice guy too.