Long winters in Minneapolis

I’ve lived in Minneapolis, Minnesota, for nearly five years, and I’m still not accustomed to the snow.

It starts snowing sometime in November and keeps snowing until well into April.

The accumulation adds up to around fifty inches per year. When I first moved to Minneapolis, I had never even seen snow in-person. In the movies and on television, snow looks beautiful and romantic. The actors and actresses don’t bother with hats or gloves and never seem cold. Nobody every needs to shovel the driveway or walkways, scrape the ice off the windshield of the car or bush off the hood. Simple jobs like pushing a shopping cart across a parking lot is a nightmare. I am constantly worried about the weight of the snow on the roof, back deck and trampoline. I’ve spent a fortune hiring someone to plow my driveway and haul away the mounds of snow. I’ve had to purchase heavy boots, warm coats, scarves, gloves, hats and sweaters to combat the cold. For around seven months per year, the outdoor temperature drops below freezing. Readings in the teens or even the negatives aren’t unusual. Blizzard conditions, school closings and driving bans are common. The heating system is one of the most important systems of the household and has a big impact on the budget. If it fails, there is the fear of the water pipes freezing. The winters are long, brutal, expensive, a lot of work and can present safety risks. It seems to take forever for spring to arrive. I get excited for the first sign of robins and sprous of daffodils. I watch for the lilac trees to bud and look forward to opening the windows and airing out the house.

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