No Thank You! We don’t want any more visitors, well-wishers or distant relations! Bilbo Baggins, The Fellowship of The Ring
All I hear these days is a lot of grumbling about the grey cold days and the snows of February. Take heart; if you’re reading this post, you’ve already made it halfway through the month. Though most of you will be happy about that, I, for one, will miss the passing of February.
Sure, February has a lot of miserable weather days, but that’s what I like about it. I like being told by my town supervisor: Stay off the roads. Do not leave your homes unless it is an emergency. He doesn’t have to tell me twice. In fact, I’ll even stay in my pajamas all day and won’t put a stitch of makeup on either. Because I know no one will ring my doorbell in the middle of a snowstorm.
You can’t say that for other months in the year. The balmy spring weather hatches more than insects. Trolling the streets of my neighborhood during the spring, summer and fall months are politicians campaigning for my vote, environmental groups asking for donations and fundraising kids selling countless overpriced items from wrapping paper to candy.
Worst of all are those religious proselytizers trying to convert me. They always pick the most bucolic day in June, when they know your front door will be wide open. You can’t even hide behind the door and pretend no one is home because they are peering at you through the screen.
Hello, how are you today? Can we talk about sin? Do you know where you are going after this life?
Why can’t they leave me alone in June? Come back when the snow is piled up against the door and I haven’t been outdoors for a week. I’ll make hot chocolate and we can talk all day about doomsday and the end of the world. But, to my relief, they never show up in February.
And who doesn’t have relatives who bolted out of New York to retire in sunny Florida? They always seem to call in the middle of February to offer their sympathetic ear.
Did you really get another ten inches of snow? I was down at the pool, listening to the radio when I heard you’re expecting another Nor’easter. That’s too bad. Gotta go! We’re having a bar-be-que at the clubhouse tonight.
At least they won’t be showing up for another five or six months. You can have February all to yourself.
Then there are the European relatives who show up every few years with in-laws and generations in tow from third cousins removed. They stay for the entire month of August because their country shuts down for the summer. They expect you to take off from work to tour around New York City and picnic in the Hamptons.
They want to play all day and party all night and expect you to pick up the tab. After all, aren’t we all rich Americans?
But, fear not, they will never show up on your snowy stoop in February when you might welcome those extra hands to help you shovel the cars out of the driveway.
In February, I don’t even make restaurant or movie dates with friends because most of the time they will have to be canceled due to inclement weather. Good; I save money that way.
With the frenetic holidays over, I welcome a cold, snowy, housebound February and don’t feel pressured to be productive. It’s too early to start Spring-cleaning, can’t wash the windows or clean out the porch yet. I can relax and do what I want – which might be nothing more than staring out the window at the redheaded woodpecker poking holes in the tree trunk – until I fade off into a blissful nap.
With no lawn mowers or noisy leaf blowers buzzing around the properties, no blown out boat engines being tuned up, no neighbors blasting music from June’s graduation parties, February in suburbia is the most peaceful month of the year. Add to that the fact that there are no unwanted “visitors, well-wishers or distant relations” knocking at the door and I would say that February is one of my favorite months.
That’s my defense and I’m sticking to it.