Teaching a southerner to survive in a blizzard

3 mins read

By Lee Scott

Having spent much of my lifetime in the north, I have had real experience living through a blizzard. Our current situation reminds those of us northerners that the current “social distancing” is almost like being in a blizzard.

The first thing that happens just prior to the blizzard is the weatherman says, “Looks like we might have a snow event.”

Just this sentence alone means that some shelves at the grocery store are going to be cleaned out. Milk, bread, and toilet paper are the first to go. People scramble for cereal, peanut butter, and macaroni and cheese. These are staples that can be eaten at all three meals.

Then comes the announcements for the cancellation of the after-school activities, then it is the schools, and before you know it, the roads are closing. When snow is coming down 3 inches an hour, the state police want people at home and safe.

Our current situation reminds me a lot of staying at home for a blizzard, but at least now I have electricity and the internet. There have been blizzards in the U.S. that have closed businesses and highways for weeks, with many people without heat.

So how do parents, kids and other adults survive a blizzard? They get creative. 

My mother would let us build a fort in the living room with blankets and pillows. That would keep us busy for hours. She would have card games, board games, coloring books and crayons. 

Then of course, there was the outdoors. We would put on layers of clothes and play out in the snow for hours and then be welcomed in the warm house with hot chocolate. 

Let’s face it though, the outside playing was more for Mom’s sake, than ours.

Nowadays, many of the kids can do video classrooms. Teachers have given the children several weeks of classroom work or they are doing video teaching. 

Parents who have the luxury of working out of their homes can have the same hours of work as their children have in virtual school. Then there are video games, movies, television shows and books.

And of course, there is still the great outdoors. It is springtime in the south, and the days are getting longer and warmer. This is also a good time to get the family garden going. 

Outside activities are not completely shut down. The Spanish Moss Trail is open for hiking and bike riding. And then at the end of the day, Mom can offer the kids some lemonade instead of hot chocolate.

As for us, I am getting my spouse focused on the spring cleaning projects; and he cannot wait for this “blizzard” to pass.


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