Follow up to cold winter

Follow up to a cold day post.

After posting my story of a cold day, I was pleased to get a rare email from one of my oldest friends….

We went to both Junior High School and High School together and a couple of years at Virginia Tech until I went off to join the Army and he went off to Michigan to vet school. He was always a good bit smarter than I.. We had lots of adventures together and he was a positive influence on my life.

He stayed in Michigan and has been a practicing vet and an instructor and mentor to many. He lives somewhere on the upper peninsula right near what I would call the frozen gates of hell.

In his email he related a couple of cold weather anecdotes from his career up there that make me ashamed to say I was chilly at all…. ever. Little things like a c section out in the open in a tee shirt at 60 below zero.

I don’t know how he tolerated it….it was not without penalties of frozen tissue….but he persisted. I left the relative summer resort weather of northeast Ohio winter because I could not take the cold, but like the mountain men of old, the Michigan winter weather was just another challenge to be faced to him……He says the summers are great….

I know that humans can adapt to climatic conditions….in Ohio I started every day for three years with at least a light jacket on….in the summer it might come off fairly early…..often soon after sunrise as I was horseback checking or gathering cows. The first winter back in Virginia I was use to cold and never wore a coat all winter….I had adapted a bit….but by the second winter back home I was bundled up like an Eskimo.

I think my friend had both a genetic and mental advantage in dealing with the weather….one side of his family had branches of the family tree up there in cold country and they had convinced him that the weather was mostly a matter of mind over matter…..If you don’t mind then it don’t matter. That and he was one of the toughest guys I have ever run into. In my Twenties through early forties I could be pretty rank myself, but I would have always preferred him as a friend rather than an opponent.