September 26, 2018
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We asked for it, and summer came

By Andrew Birden, NEP General Manager

Remember that late April snowstorm that had some of us complaining with exasperation, “I just wish this winter would end”?

Well, we asked for it, and summer came.

When I compare my snowblower sitting at the back of the garage to the grass-stained lawnmower waiting in the yard for another spiraling marathon of mind-numbing boredom and sweat, I wonder if a grotesquely humid summer is worse than a bone-chilling winter.

From my July 5 perspective, the cold of winter isn’t so cold anymore. In fact, this blast of heat has actually prompted me to consider installing an air conditioner, because the last few days have pushed me and my family to an edge I never saw coming. I figured, sure, global warming is real, but I live in the forests of Northern Maine. It will never impact us up here.  I’m well above sea level, have plenty of water, and our biggest export is videos of people skiing in chest-high snow.

But that all came to a sweaty halt this week because of temperatures edging above 100.

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I’ll be the first to admit it. Summer won. At least with the cold you can eventually put on enough clothes so that you are warm. Sure, in the winter you might look like a pile of laundry balanced on a pair of oversized boots, but at least you can feel your toes. With summer heat, it is different. The most you can do is find some shade, and essentially strip down to your all-or-nothings. Once you hit that point, there is nowhere else to go. You just sit there sweating anyway, unable to move for fear of disappearing in a sizzling pffffft of steam.  For some people, even the mosquitoes and black flies won’t bother us because we smell so bad.

So summer, you win.  I give up. Can you just leave us alone now?

There’s a few folks out there, gleeful sons of guns who want nothing more than to see three more feet of snow drop down after a blizzard just so they can go out and zoom across the snowy landscape in their juggernauts of winter freedom and downtown annoyance. Those folks are hearing the rest of us complain and laughing their butts off.  “I bet you wish winter had stuck around a little longer now, don’tcha?”

Yeah sure. Whatever.

Then there are the folks who love this sort of weather. I suspect they are actually strange mutant extraterrestrials from a muggy steamy jungle planet where everyone is skinny, and the towns have based the local economy on sweat, so everyone is wealthy beyond their dreams.

Well I’ve had it.  I’m throwing in the towel. People ask me what my favorite season is in Maine, and I am here to tell you that my favorite season is Mud Season, because you don’t have to mow the lawn, you don’t have to shovel the drive, and you don’t have to sweat. The other eleven months of the year can do what I should have done on Thursday when the temperature topped 100 degrees, and just go jump in the lake.


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