As I was mowing my lawn for what seemed to be the millionth time this summer my neighbor wandered over from his task of allowing weeds to take over his lawn to ask me if I was sick of summer yet? OK, I answered, but I reminded him of a time in mid-February as we were attempting to liberate our families from the snows and cold of winter, when he asked me if I was sick of winter yet?
Because I am old as dirt my mind started to question which season was easier to survive? Being the teacher I’ve always been I started to compare the two seasons.
First of all summer produces an incredible amount of heat. Winter, on the other hand produces an incredible amount of cold. As a science person I clearly understand that cold does not exist. Cold is simply the absence of heat. As to what is easier to survive is an interesting question. The heat of summer can be defeated if you have air conditioning in your home. The cold of winter can be subdued by one’s heating system. Both are expensive. Air conditioning explodes one’s electric bill while heating either defeats one’s budget or breaks one’s back if they are apt to heat their house with wood. This question seems like a draw. In New England if you ignore these problems you will probably die.
Then there is the question of how much work is involved in surviving the different seasons. The hardest part of summer is mowing one’s lawn. All of our lawns are filled with weeds. To understand this concept remembers that all a blade of grass is defined, as is a weed. It doesn’t produce any fruit or anything that can be used at a future date. If one has a garden or flowers this problem is exponentially increased because of the necessity to water every day and remove any weed that has a tendency to take over the garden. Remember, these same weeds encompass the majority of our lawns.
Winter, on the other hand, produces a different type of problem. After every storm that is sure to happen, one has to clear out one’s driveway in order to escape one’s home and one also had to clear out the entrance to your home and clear a pathway so the oil or gas companies can deliver fuel. This is not only back breaking work but it also freezes most of the skin on your body to the point one no longer wants to feel one’s body because after it thaws out the pain of one thousands needles are sure to follow.
Both seasons do not only produce what is considered work. In the summer one has the responsibility to have at least a couple of dozen bar-b-q’s on a deck. It is imperative to have this get-togethers with one’s family and friends in order to be invited to their parties. I am convinced I no longer grow any hair on my hands and arms because they have been destroyed by past battles with my grills.
The winter season is filled with various indoor parties that start with the absurdity of Halloween through the mainly forgotten New Year’s Eve celebrations. Christmas is thrown in a week before the start of the New Year producing bills that will have to paid for through most of the New Year.
Summer traffic is difficult. In New England and especially in Maine one has a specific way to drive. Most of us don’t drive fast and we basically drive as if there was no one else on the road. Summer changes this because we are infiltrated with drivers that follow a whole different set of rules. Everyone seems to have to get to some place fast and since they are always cutting us off or basically ignoring that we even exist. I guess they seem important. I never want to be that important.
Winter traffic has less traffic but it has something summer will never see. Winter roads of filled with giant plow trucks that literally can’t see us. It is best to simply pull over into the breakdown lane than attempt to keep up with the plows or ever try to pass them. This is actually a foolish task because as soon as you pass one plow you are sure to follow another.
There are many difference between the months of summer and winter. In the summer we evolve into vodka and tonics vs. the scotches of winter. In the summer we have our children enjoying all of our time while in winter there is a concept called school. There is one reality all of us experience and that is which one is better. I don’t have an answer to this but I will tell you next winter.