This is the time of year when the talk on the Fork turns almost exclusively to weather- at least among the people I know. And ‘brutal’ is the term I hear most commonly employed. “The cold is brutal,” we’ll say to one another, as if the outside temperature (currently a steady sixteen degrees) wasn’t just weather but a terrible, boorish presence bent on ruining the substance of our days. And, I suppose, in many ways, that it truly has – save for the hardiest souls like my friend Louisa, who will (still) go walking on the beach, admiring the water, exclaiming at the beauty – to nobody’s ears but her own.
Or at least I’m assuming that Louisa, won’t have much company out on the beach. Instead, others have told me, thanks to the cold, all the things that they can no longer do: including bike to the post office, go for a walk or even, in some extreme cases, get out of bed.(My friend who told me this said she has dedicated this period of intense cold to watching the Food Channel instead.) Of course I also have friends who have used the weather as a reason to get out of town, to places that are either warmer and colder. (Yes, the latter really is true.) I’m staying put- for now- and having dinner parties with friends. Like the dinner I’ll be attending this evening- I’ll bring the wine (as I almost always do) – probably a bottle of Samling, a Slovenian wine I discovered in the course of writing a story for The Wall Street Journal a few weeks ago. Even though my friends are in the wine business too, they’re likely to all be cooking- they’re very good cooks. That is, of course, something else can be done in the cold. Cooking. Or baking. I could bake cookies or bread- though I will probably go buy some instead. Baking is just too much effort – in brutish times such as these.