T his is my sixth winter in Marquette. The last few winters have been pretty tame when it comes to how much snow the area has gotten. This has made me feel a little soft when it comes to this winter.
I'll be the first to admit that I don't like snow. I knew what I was getting into when I came up here five and half years ago for school, but that doesn't change the fact that I really don't like snow. These past few weeks have certainly reminded me of that.
I still remember my first winter up here. It was pretty similar to this year. The first time it really snowed my freshman year, I was amazed that the school didn't declare a snow day. From that day on, I was convinced I would never get a snow day from Northern Michigan University.
That day, the snow was blowing so hard I couldn't see where I was going and had to look down at the disappearing sidewalk just to make sure I wasn't straying away from campus. I still remember walking 10 feet out of West Hall toward the Academic Mall and thinking, "forget this, I'm going back to bed because there is no way I'm adventuring out into this mess alone."
As I was turning around to go back inside, my friend Carolyn came walking out of the door, so we shielded our eyes and walked to class together.
Since that first season in the U.P., the winters haven't been as rough. I feel like it didn't snow as much and, when it did, it didn't result in blizzard conditions. I can't remember a single time between my first year and this year where I have had to shield my face and look at the ground in order to walk somewhere.
Because of the recent string of tame winters, I definitely wasn't ready for this one. I wasn't ready to have to wake up 15 minutes earlier just to brush all the snow off of my car. I wasn't ready to worry about what the road conditions were on my way to work - or worry about whether I would make it there safely. This is my sixth winter in the U.P., and you would think I would be used to this by now. But I?let my guard down and I've found that I've gotten soft when it comes to winter.
Editor's note: Recent Northern Michigan University graduate and Mining Journal Ishpeming Bureau reporter Adelle Whitefoot can be reached at 906-228-2500. Her email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.