By John Matonich
I was driving to the shop the other morning and was listening to a local radio station. The radio host was speaking with a local businessman and they were discussing the weather forecast which isn’t what I wanted to hear for the middle of April. We have predictions from 10” to 30” of snow coming our way. I wasn’t real happy to hear that.
We are running behind about 15 degrees on temperature and the nights are well below freezing so not much green is being seen. If we get the snow being predicted, it will take that much longer for me to have to worry about grass cutting instead of snow shoveling. Oh well, this is what I signed up for when I moved back home and it won’t be the first year or the last when Old Man Winter hangs on for a while.
I did have to smile when the two folks on the radio commented that even though it has been a longer winter than what we have experienced over the last several years, we are still lucky to be in the west end of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. I couldn’t agree more and it is great to be home again.
The road I was driving on runs along the east shore of the lake we live on and the frost in the road makes it quite a roller coaster ride, so you can’t be in a hurry or you can expect tire and shock issues on your vehicle. I was taking my time not only because of the road but also because this time of year I see about 2 dozen deer scattered alongside the road on my trip along the lake shore. They are fun to see and because I am not moving too fast, I can react quickly if they decide to run across or alongside the road. This happens quite often and I enjoy watching them bound along with their tail in the air looking for their buddies.
Some areas along the roadside are about the only places where the sun has melted spots on the ground and they are natural attractions for the deer looking for something to eat. I have always enjoyed seeing wildlife and the morning ride to my shop can be a great show.
I guess that is why the folks on the radio spoke of how lucky we are here. I have to agree. Besides seeing the wildlife, the drivers of the half a dozen vehicles I saw on the way in all waved. I don’t remember that happening in our urban areas too often unless it was the one finger wave because they weren’t getting were they needed to be as quick as they would have liked. We don’t have traffic jams here and other than the flashing red lights on our local school buses, you don’t have to stop for much. This makes for a calm ride and you can enjoy your favorite music and a good cup of coffee in your travel mug.
I guess I am trading living close to a mall or big box store for this serenity but to me it is absolutely worth it. Even if winter isn’t over and we get dumped on once again, I will get the snow cleared away and wait for the weather to turn in a warmer direction sometime later this year. As my dad always said, “You can dress for cold, but you can’t dress for hot.” I always thought he had a good point.
And that’s the situation as I survey it …
After a 35-year career downstate livin’ amongst da trolls, during which he built a successful engineering and surveying business, John Matonich is back home in da U.P. His column will appear here occasionally, don’tcha know. His book “Surveyin’ Da Situation” is available on Amazon.com.
Image credit: foodtographer