Warmth in Winter
I have finally accepted that it is winter.
For the last two weeks I've been daily chasing sunbeams. Every single one tended my enthusiasm that winter is actually on its way out the door, shooed like some overstayed guest by my own delusion. But I've come to realize that's not quite fair. Winter is one of New Hampshire's most famous seasons; it ought to have a few months to itself.
Not only that; yesterday I looked at the weather, realized it was ten degrees outside, and caught myself thinking, "Oh good, it's warm!"
Oh good, it's warm.
I think that's the beauty of Dartmouth in the winter. We make the best of it and put aside our preconceived notions of "winter"—Seattle's grey misted paradise, Florida friends' sunshine state, and even the current summers of the Southern hemisphere. As wonderful as all those seasons are, they offer the opportunity to just go outside and lay on the grass, feel the sun, come inside only when hunger or sleepiness prompts, and never due to the weather.
Not so much here. Instead, when we're wanting some warmth, we look to those around us. Despite the chill, sudden need for hats, and conversation rendered visible white puffs in the oh good, it's warm temperature range, goodwill isn't a seasonal affair.
Warmth actually abounds on Dartmouth's campus. Take for example, Dartmouth's uncommon suitability to this weather: cozy nooks abound in libraries where students can snuggle in and watch the snowfall. Cafes emanate warmth of the literal variety, coffee mugs becoming miniature heat sources with which we brave the walk between classes. And even commoner than all of that is the warmth of companionship; as cliché as it sounds, students walking in small hat-topped flocks, laughing through brisk air, is a sport we take seriously around here. And it's one of the best ways to stay warm.
The weather is a classic conversation starter with the power to turn acquaintances into friends. People smile and laugh while stomping their boots and never seem too busy studying to say hello. As though compensating for the weather, we seek to bring warmth to others. It's the people here that make winters fun. And though I'm still learning how to balance on the snowscape and how best to warm-cut my way between classes, I'm glad to be weathering the winter with them.
Though fall was a term for adjusting and settling in, now feels like a time to put down roots. I can only imagine what spring will bring!