The Weather Outside is Frightful


Usually by this time we’ve had a skiff of snow or two; the upper pass is off limits because of the infamous Blue IceDome of Death; and I’ve gotten a few dozen images from frozen formations on the creek.

This year so far, none of that.

winterIcons250We still have lots of greens growing in the garden and the curly mustard is even starting to bolt. What’s up with that? Will we (or those who come after us) someday be having a year-round garden here in the upper South?

Meanwhile, will anything of value to those someday-people on Goose Creek happen in Paris or any other major city? But maybe there are weak rays of hope in this warmer-than-usual December of the warmest year since humankind has left its large and larger footprint on the planet:

“Perhaps, when 10 of the largest oil and gas companies sign a letter calling on world leaders to sign an effective deal at the international climate negotiations in Paris in December, progress is being made. In a statement that will likely surprise many, the CEOs of these 10 giant fossil fuel corporations state that, “we will continue in our efforts to help lower the current global emissions trajectory,” as they apparently commit themselves to ensuring a “2°C future.”

I am hopeful at times, briefly. I imagine but probably won’t be around long enough to see a true turning point, much less the passing of a millennium during which seasons settle back to something like what our generation used to know, to be able to predict, to change wardrobes according to calendars, and plant our gardens, May through October.

Share this with your friends!

Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

Articles: 3013

One comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

  1. It’s all frightening. But I have never felt so hopeful. This is the first climate conference ever that at least got off the ground. Is it my imagination, but is there less rhetoric about “no such thing as climate change”?