I moved to Florida for the weather. There were other reasons, but I forget what they were. In case I forget to mention it, it's sunny, 68F and balmy here in the Tampa Bay area on this Monday after Christmas.
For the first few months after I left Connecticut - I left in mid-October 2008 - I began most phone calls back north with the weather report. "Hi, it's 78 and sunny here." The first few times I did that, I garnered the desired expressions of envy, tempered with shared joy at my sweet circumstance. Of course, that soon changed. I have learned that short-term pleasure at the good fortunes of others rarely survives serious snow. Eventually, the bloom falls off the rose, and people start to snarl. I started getting responses like, "Shut your pie-hole. My car is in a snow bank."
Being the sort of guy who is sensitive to the plight of the less fortunate, I eased back on the weather routine. "Hi," I'd say, "How's Fido?"
And my Northern Correspondent would reply, "Fine. I suppose the weather is great where you are?"
Not wanting to lie too blatantly, I replied, "Um, it's nice, I suppose."
Silence descended. I could sense the battle raging in my NC's soul. Eventually, perhaps inevitably, unable to stifle the fatal question, my NC would crumble and ask, "How nice?"
"74 and breezy."
"Shut your goober-trap. Fido froze his thing to the fire hydrant last night and we needed the fire department to free him."
"Gracious!" I would exclaim, as sympathetically as I could. "I hope he's OK?'
"Well, he'll never be a father again."
Eventually, I learned to temper the truth for the benefit of the bereft. "Oh, it's cold and grey down here," I'd say.
"Shut it. My nose hair iced up while I was jump-starting the car this morning."
There really is no adequate response to that.
To help my northerners heal, I called often last summer to report the weather. "94 and humid as hell," I'd say. My NC invariably felt comforted that it was only 85 in Hartford. I always neglected to mention that I was at the pool with a pina colada and that everything here is air conditioned to a fare-thee-well. "Just miserable here," I'd say. "Be glad you're up north."
So here it is December again. Life is so sweet. But don't tell that to my NCs.