Being a wanna-be ski professional or ski-bum (as you like) you can expect I like winter more than the average person on the street. However, I do not find winter all fun and games, many of the things I consider as annoying are exactly as you would expect, I guess I find fewer things annoying or perhaps it would be better to say I found something more valuable than the costs of the nuisances. Also, I am starting to add more clothing layers to my normal wear during the winter and that helps a lot, not just outside but inside too. Skiing, snowmobiling, and other such activities during the winter are things I look forward to and here is my list of winter nuisances, be sure to vote and list yours!
My Winter Nuisances — The List
A Winter Nuisance — Darkness Falls and Seasons Change
I detest the absence of the sun, the near perpetual darkness I find myself in. I leave home for work in the dark and I return home in the dark. The darkness means outside chores are harder to accomplish. I do not really see the sun until mid-February. This makes driving from the ski resorts more of a pain as well and this leads to number two.
A Winter Nuisances — Driving
Driving is much more stressful during the winter, it could all be swell conditions but you need to take that lonely stretch of road and you find the last patch of black-ice, to everything turn turn turn. I usually leave the cruise control off until I am certain there is no more ice on the roads. The worst driving is early in the season when we are all getting used to the fact we are driving on ice again. Longer to start up, longer to stop, slower turns, and of course you may doing everything right but the car in front of you may spin out and you run into them.
Cars are grumpier as well. They are more likely to not start, more likely to develop flats, and they have this uncanny ability to sense the coldest day of the year and break down. My poor wife had two breakdowns on her way home from work on last winter’s coldest night. A colleague helped her with the first breakdown and I rode to the rescue on the second breakdown.
A Winter Nuisance — Driveways and Sidewalks
It is 4:00 am and the wind is howling and the snow falling, sounds like a good time to stay in bed under the covers with your wife, right? Wrong, it is time for me to derack and put on four layers of clothing, dig out my ski gear (goggles, balaclava, snow-pants, and old ski parka), jam my feet into my Sorrels, and fire up the snowblower. Fortunately, I have a snowblower and it makes a very hard job just hard. The snowblower does not get all the snow off and usually leaves a glaze on the driveway and I strive to follow up with a shovel, but as long as our truck and car can get in and out of the driveway that is all I really need. Unfortunately, we have a lowspot on our driveway and that becomes a lake when that snow I did not clear off melts and it turns to solid ice when the cold returns.
Fortunately, we do not live in a location with sidewalks so we do not have a municipality threatening us with treble-union pay scale shoveling.
A Winter Nuisance — Waking up in a Cold Bedroom
Even if I can sleep into the late hour of 5:30 – 6:00 am I still have the exit the warmth of the covers into the cold air. We have a fireplace and burn lots of wood during the winter which keeps the house warm but then the house does not cool down enough to to turn the furnace on in the morning and warm up the bedroom, which interestingly leads us to the next hate.
A Winter Nuisance — Waking up in a Fiery Inferno of a Bedroom
If the house does cool down enough to kick the furnace in, in the morning, our bedroom heats up to crazy warm temperatures. The furnace usually kicks in a good 45-30 minute prior to wake up time and of course as the bedroom heats up that starts to disturb my sleep and essentially wakes me up. This does not relieve me from the cold because I eventually have to leave the bedroom. All things considered, I guess I prefer the cold bedroom after winter drags on I get used to the cold and I nearly get to the point I think I could go out in 15° F weather in my shorts without a shirt and socks.
A Winter Nuisance — Dry Skin
Winter skin stinks, it cracks, it is itchy, and flaky. I wear a cap (or better yet my ski helmet) and that winter itch affects my scalp big time. I guess I need to wash my hair less and I have started to doing that, maybe just wetting it in the morning. I have tubes of skin moisturizer all over the place.
YOUR Winter Nuisances
Vote on and add your own nuisances below!