I am thoroughly loving the cold and snow. I have been going out in the elements frequently each day. The necessities include animal care - food and water for canine, feline, duck and wild bird lives in the single-digit whiteness we are calling February. Additionally, I have been enjoying my once or (most days) twice-daily cross-country ski jaunts out in the snow. I explained my XC-skiing to a neighbor last night - call it endorphins, call it anti-cabin fever, call it whatever you like, but I am very happy in the evenings, feeling physically exhausted and thirsty and hungry after an hour or more of skiing. It's how one feels after a full afternoon of downhill skiing: worn out and satisfied. So many people complain about the cold (and it HAS been cold!) and the snow. I do quite happily with the elements if I make them play to my favor. (Disclaimer: I sing a whole 'nother song in corny Kansas in August, I will be the first to admit; talk about being a shut-in!)
A day before these inches and inches and inches of snow fell upon us, I made a trip to the Nelson Atkins Museum in Kansas City. I love that place. I REALLY loved it on my last visit, when I discovered the wonderful climate-controlled atmosphere that it employs - as do all art museums, by the way. In order to keep ages-old paintings, manuscripts, and other worthy art in good stead, museums keep the air temperature at an even (slightly warm?) keel, and they keep the humidity at an awesome level. (Awesome, to me, the one with desert-like air in her propane-heated home, which, I should mention, is hardly heated at all by normal folks' standards.)
I felt like I had wandered into a tropical rainforest; it was different from our home!
OK, most people would probably not even notice a change in climate, but it really was the very first thing I noticed when I walked through the door from the underground parking lot.
While I was there, breathing in all those warm, moist air molecules, I enjoyed a new exhibition of French Impressionists. And I learned of an artist I was not familiar with: Jules Breton.
Washerwomen of the Breton Coast