Then I step outside and take less than a dozen steps before announcing to every person within earshot that I am freezing to death.
Twelve seconds later, while my cheeks go blue from frostbite, someone loudly shouts something awful like, “Sherri, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet!”
“Stop that,” I bark in their direction. “Stop making fun of my goose bumps. While you’re at it, remove that giddy tone from your voice, too.”
In stereo, people tell me that we’re in the midst of an unseasonably mild winter.
“When you discover that the heat wave for the day is a whopping 125 below zero, you can complain,” They say.
“Drat,” I grumble through chattering teeth.
(All right. Fine. I don’t say drat. That’s definitely not what I say. Just use your imagination.)
In my earlier years I wasn’t exactly this much of a winter hater.
For example, I loved snow skiing.
But when my clothing was drenched – all the way to my long underwear – I made everyone else miserable until they took me home. Yes, that’s how I roll. I am a big baby.
If someone had invented a way to ski down the slopes on 85-degree days, I would likely still claim a place on a mountain top. After all, I love the adrenalin rush that accompanies the fear that I might plow face first into a tree or a couple of other people or maybe the ski lodge on my way to the bottom of the hill.
No one invented snow ski days in sunny 85 degrees, so I don’t ski anymore.
The truth is that I have always hated cold weather.
But now I hate it even more.
No doubt about it. I am a lousy excuse for a Sherri Chapstick type.
In my opinion, winter clothing is drab, depressing and restrictive.
No one can look anything but chunky while wearing three sweaters and a ugly vest under a cumbersome coat.
Plus I have the dry skin of an alligator.
My heels can be lethal weapons.
If I happen to need protection, I only need to scrape those scaly heels on a bad guy’s body.
I will draw blood. I guarantee you that one.
In one swipe my dry heels will scratch the epidermis off of the most sinister criminal.
Until spring I will be wearing layers of black, blacker and gray clothing.
If the temperature just happens to rise to mid-80s by noon, I will only need to strip off seven layers to get to the sundress.
Thank goodness for girlfriends, that’s all I’ve got to say.
They generously share sweaters and hats, coats and boots.
A few of them have given me delicious flannel pajamas too.
Those sweet moments mean the world to me.
But my winter-related rule remains the same … if I’m not at work, my crunchy heels and I will be cozied up together inside my little abode.
Yes, I will be whining until spring.