Ok, I’ll admit it. I’ve not spent much time up in the northern part of the US. Not ever. I mean, why would a southern-to-the-core country girl leave a perfectly good homeland and venture to the, well, north? Right?
I have to admit I’m as green as grass when it comes to things northerly… like weather. It took me three days to figure out that the white stuff on the ground was snow. After outrunning this week’s lake effect snow storm that dumped six feet of snow on Buffalo, driving through a clipper storm and doing pre-trip inspections on my truck in ice and single digit temperatures, I’ve gained a whole new respect for my friends up there.
I lick my lips and taste the salt, though unlike the salt air along the coast of Florida, it’s mixed with cold, slime and road grime. It sticks like glue to everything. Windshield washers don’t really work. Every fuel stop requires going inside and purchasing an anti-gel liquid that must be added to the diesel fuel when the temperatures are expected to be below twenty degrees.
Driving in snow requires skill. No texting. No talking on cell phones. No blinking. When the wind swirls, you lose complete sight of the road all together. And with everything covered in that white stuff, it’s impossible to determine if there is a shoulder or a drop off. It’s enough to make a southern driver’s heart skip a beat or two.
I made it through the storm but I couldn’t help but think that for northerners, this is just a way of life. For months out of the year they put on every stitch of clothing they own and venture out into the fierce wind and cold.
Day after Day.
Judging by the looks on their faces, they don’t particularly enjoy it. They just do it. For this southern gal, the winter storm was an EVENT! For them, it was just another day. I’m amazed. Truly impressed at how they just take the snow and very high winds in stride, think nothing of it and continue to live life.
By the fourth day in the frozen tundra with snow surrounding me, I began to grow accustomed to it. I automatically put on my SmartWool quick drying wool socks and waterproof boots. I dressed in three layers and had a fourth handy to put on when the need arose. I even was hot when I returned inside my truck after being outside for a few minutes.
I was adjusting.
It made me ponder how adaptive we really are when we allow ourselves to settle into the circumstance. Our minds will block out that which is uncomfortable. By the fifth day, I didn’t notice that fierce biting cold that sliced through my cheeks that I once thought was going to be the death of me.
I’d still prefer not to drive through snowstorms but I have adapted. God designed us to adjust to whatever our life presents and not only survive, but thrive. No matter what the circumstance, God will take care of us. Our bodies- and our emotions- can handle it. We just have to trust it.
I’m so grateful that I came to the frozen tundra. Not only do I have a whole new respect for my northerly neighbors, I recognize how masterfully God created this southern gal.
Adapt. Adjust. Acclimatize.
Truly, we are fearfully and wonderfully made!