Strong and Comfortable

How do you feel about cold weather?

I feel the best in casual clothes because I can move better, and like Suze Orman on SNL, “it’s all about the jackets.” I have three American Giant jackets, and I’ll never need another one. They’re so well-made I think they’re my only heirloom. They also complete every outfit I own, because they’re gray, navy, and teal. One is rugby style, and the others are hoodies. The rugby jacket looks more dressed up. 😉

Additionally, I love taking photos, and there are few similar experiences walking around the monuments covered in snow.

But by far, my favorite story involving cold weather involves snow, a Jewish cemetery, and Pacific Northwest elevation.

Dana found out that her ancestors were buried at Beth Israel (Dana is not Jewish, but they were). So, we get this information and we head out there, because it was sprinkling snowflakes…. not even enough to raise a delay for anything. I told Dana that it would look so pretty in photos, the monuments covered in a “light dusting of snow.”

Enter southwest Portland, Oregon.

We cross the river and realize that the snow is falling faster, but we’re in a Jeep Grand Cherokee. We could go anywhere, especially with chains in the cargo area just in case. Besides, it wasn’t THAT much snow.

We arrive at the cemetery and now it’s really coming down. It’s also late afternoon, and the sun is just starting to set. Dana goes and knocks on the caretaker’s door to ask if he knew where her ancestors were, or if he had a map. He said he’d find where they were, and didn’t have a map she could read.

Dana stamps out to my Jeep and says, “the caretaker said he had a map, but not one that I could read.” She was very upset and indignant about it because she thought the caretaker was saying she was stupid. I said, “Dana………………. we’re at BETH ISRAEL. Don’t you think the map is in Hebrew?” I have never heard anything make her laugh harder than she did in that moment.

We find the ancestors and pay our respects, and by then the snow has stopped. I took some gorgeous pictures that day, because I was so right about the weather making the photos look better.

Getting home was another matter. “Hell is other people.” No one ran into us, but we did help keep a Prius on the road when it went sideways. It also took two and a half hours to get home, but I’m not sure we really noticed all that much. We can both talk to a signpost all day long, so being stuck in traffic was nothing.

I think we went home and played our favorite game, Drunk Trivial Pursuit, which was always fun but never in the way we thought. First of all, neither of us ever forgets anything, so being drunk never made us worse at the game, and we got better at it over time because we didn’t have to know as much. We just had to remember the right answer from the last time we got it wrong. The best part is that it was classic, the one in the blue box that everyone had when it was a full-on craze. Anyone our age and above has played. Some of the answers were funny in retrospect because they aged like milk, some because they brought up things we hadn’t talked about since they happened.

We both had that skill where we can pull answers to questions out of thin air because our combined interests covered everything on earth. If it wasn’t direct experience, it was reading a book in 1993….. or picking up things from other people. Seriously, how else would I know Jordan Spieth won The Masters in like, 2015? I’m not going to look it up, but I won free beer which I owe entirely to friends with a golf obsession (I’m a queer woman, you can aim that number HIGH).

We both knew Shakespeare (she was a technical theater major in college), and I’m a voracious reader), and yet my favorite 12 minutes of television is “Just Set Up The Chairs” from the cartoon “Regular Show.” I watched it every day for months, because it was just the right amount of time to eat lunch when I came home in the middle of the day (I lived 10 or 15 minutes from my office so I could do it easily). Doctor Who is brilliant, but has never made me laugh as hard as Muscle Man and Hi-Five Ghost…….. and say all the time that I found my Margaret in Dana and now need to find my Cloudy Jane). It’s just so inane and yet meaningful.

I have Mordecai gripper socks that are double weight. Perfect for cold weather.


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