Chip Ford's 1974 Catalina 22 Restoration Project
Sail #3282  l  Marblehead, Massachusetts

The Salem News 
Thursday, March 18, 2004

Winter lingers; spring takes its time

It wasn't quite the apocalyptic weather event some forecasters were rather gleefully predicting. But the snowstorm that began Tuesday night and lasted into the early hours of St. Patrick's Day was yet another slap at those of us who have chosen to live in this Northeastern corner of the country.

Retirees are leaving in droves for places like the Carolinas and the Southwestern part of the country, telling those they leave behind that while it gets cold there too, spring comes early and fall lingers until Christmas.

Not so here. In New England, it's fall that makes its arrival early, blowing in usually within hours of Labor Day. Meanwhile spring, which according to the calendar is due here Saturday, always takes its time coming north.

We ought to feel very fortunate if this week's wintry weather is the last we experience until next November. Many can remember the April Fool's Day storm of a few years ago that paralyzed more than a few cities and towns hereabouts; and while snow is a relatively rare event after Easter, it can be cold and damp - in other words, a lot like winter - right up through Memorial Day.

Of course, real New Englanders will tell you that's why our summers surpass that of any other part of the country. As the person hitting himself in the head with a hammer responded when asked to account for his strange action, "It feels so good when it stops."