Under the weather, weather-beaten, weather worn and weather weary.
All apply to residents who look longingly for signs this winter will end, spring will come, jackets will be shed and everyday living will get easier.
It’s New Hampshire, it’s February, it’s winter.
Yes, it is, how well everyone knows.
But it’s time for a change.
When the brightest news of the day is the state imposing its spring weight limits on trucks, something needs to be done.
Mother Nature has been in control for too long, pounding the state with storm after storm after storm. She has sent school calendars into a tailspin and has residents menacing with shovels when plow drivers fill in the driveway they just cleared.
The weekend was but a cruel tease, a taste of sunshine, melting snowmen and gloves left behind.
Residents plunged back into the world of ice scrapers, dead batteries and wrapping themselves beyond recognition as arctic air returned with a vengeance.
The latest to fall victim to a tougher-than-average winter was ice melt. Residents sent covetous glances at the full barrel at the top of a neighbor’s driveway after they returned, once again, empty-handed from a resupply mission.
Fluffy found herself short of litter when icy walkways overrode her sanitary needs.
Little Jimmy’s sandbox will be emptier come spring after Mom and Dad raided it in order to get the car up the driveway.
People resorted to water softener and pool chemicals to keep their back steps and walkways navigable.
Pity those who heat with wood and burned through too many cords before winter had a breezy thought of moving on. Seasoned firewood is as rare as a day without snowflakes. Dealers are out and green wood just doesn’t cut it.
Wood pellets, too, are in short supply and demand for road salt down South has led to tense calculations by local highway chiefs.
There have been fleeting moments of cautious optimism.
A robin sighting last week had some all atwitter, until a little research yielded information that the birds sometimes winter over, even in the steely cold Granite State.
Spring training has started, but it’s hard to warm to the fact that multi-millionaire baseball players are playing catch when residents here just want to catch a break.
Potholes, often an indication the weather has broken, have led to nothing but broken spirits and bank accounts. The unsettling sensation and ominous clunks associated with hitting a hole on the highway will be with us until April, weather or not.
Skiers, ski area operators, snowmobilers, skaters, builders of snowmen and drivers of sleds feel blessed. Organizers of Derry’s Frost Festival and Londonderry’s Musquash Day had reason to celebrate. Every outdoor event requiring snow went off with a hitch. The ice sculptures remained frozen long enough for everyone to see the beauty in ice.
But, OK, they’ve had their fun, increased their revenue, celebrated winter.
Like the Christmas tree that stands in the corner long after it should have been pitched on a bonfire, winter has worn out its welcome.
The calendar turns to March soon and Daylight Saving Time returns March 9.
It’s time, Mother Nature. Release your icy grip and show a little compassion.
We’ve had enough.