Dear January 2014,

You’re leaving, out the door from wherever you came until I see you next year. I can’t say this has been the happiest time we’ve ever spent together – but, I guess it’s better to be together than not! As a guest, I would have to put you in the semi-rude category. Every time I wanted to step out the door, there you were. Like a jealous lover, threatening my outdoor walks with wind chills and negative integers. C’mon Jan, everyone needs their own space.

Can we discuss how you randomly dumped your big feet of snow here and there, all over our walkways and roads, without a concern for rush hour times or salt trucks? Yeah, always at the worst possible time, we tripped over your big fat lumpy piles, and slid across those random tracks you left. I mean really, pick up after yourself!

How about all that time you spent flirting with our distant records? Did that warm your arctic soul? Here in Chicago, your flirtatious dramas stole the headlines away from politics and murders. Who knew you needed so much attention? Then, you tried to shut us down by freezing our metra tracks and closing our schools, but life went on. Chicago smugly became Chiberia, adopting and accepting you with unconquerable spirit and open frozen arms. Apparently, this bored you to icy frozen tears, which you flooded us with, one unsuspecting night. To cheer yourself, you invited your distant cousin for a visit… Polar Vortex, twice.  You got us. Frostbite was unacceptable graft. We hunkered down inside our homes while Polar Vortex spilled in from the North Pole; eating up all that was left of our urban hospitality. Snapping selfies around our distressed city, the two of you blew through our empty streets like villainous tourists.

I’m exhausted January. You’re leaving and I couldn’t be happier. I’m tired of wearing two pairs of sox, boots, spikes, layers and layers of clothing, scarves and mittens and gloves just to go walk outdoors. You know, your bone-chilling demeanor hasn’t defeated me – only made me stronger. I will keep going outdoors because I know February is on it’s way. I see the little red hearts in the store windows. I see February’s  best friend dawning on the horizon. Sunshine – a shy, warm guest who everyone always wants to see more of.

Besides, February is the perfect guest. Staying a short time and never wearing out her welcome.

Good riddance January.


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