Crazy weather part of good life in Neb.

Welcome to Nebraska! That’s what I was thinking all weekend long, while cursing and smarting at the seesaw weather we were experiencing.

I went back to my old stomping grounds Friday while the guys in our family went deer hunting. As I was packing up for the short weekend trip, I realized the disparity in temperatures was going to affect the amount of clothing I took along. This was going to be the oddest collection of clothing ever.

My mom had gotten us tickets to the Husker game, and with a 2:30 kickoff time Saturday, I knew that it was very possible that by the end of the game, we could be billowing in the harsh northern winds of a Nebraska winter, even though the high for the day was supposed to be in the mid-70s.

So, how would I manage that conundrum?

Well, I decided to pack jeans and a long-sleeved shirt to wear to the game. But I also packed a pair of shorts and a T-shirt for the morning, in case we left the house early. My mom and I were both in long-sleeved shirts, so we were very hot through the first three quarters, but by the fourth quarter and the walk back to the car, we were very comfortable. No use for the shorts, it turned out, but if they had a dressing room in Memorial Stadium, I may have considered using it to balance the mercury’s instability.

On Sunday, we planned to go to Omaha to get pictures of the two grandbabies together. That would take some warmth, with a high in the 30s. I packed my heaviest sweater, jeans and boots, along with my winter coat. I called this one perfectly, as I was warm everywhere we went.

Never before have I packed a pair of shorts and my heaviest sweater in the same bag. It shouldn’t have surprised me, though, since I do live in Nebraska, and the weather is one of those things that I believe is a bonus to the Good Life. After all, if you’re stuck waiting somewhere with a total stranger, what can you talk about that’s both interesting and non-threatening? Not politics, obviously, but the weather.

Maybe that’s why they say Midwesterners are so friendly. We always have something to talk about.

My husband has long mumbled four-letter words with each extreme weather event, especially when it snows. He’s lobbied many times for a move out West, where the weather is stable and typically warm.

To this I say, “No way.” That’s non-negotiable. What would I do without the wonderful first fall days, when there’s a crisp smell in the air and a comfy sweater is the perfect choice to stay warm? Or the hot summer days when a dip in the pool feels like the most refreshing experience possible? Or the cold winter nights, when nothing is more relaxing than listening to the crackle of a fire? Or the spring dew drops that smell so fresh?

The changing of the seasons and the sudden swings in the weather keep us on our toes and paying attention. It would be boring to wake up every morning and know exactly what the weather was going to be that day because it never changes.

And how boring would our wardrobes be if there was no reason to have both sweaters and pretty sundresses or fun plaid shorts?

The topsy-turvy weather definitely threw me for a loop this weekend and packing was more difficult than it ought to be.

But truth be told, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Deann Stumpe

In her weekly column that runs Mondays in the Hastings Tribune, Deann Stumpe gabs about relationships, movies and TV, and life with a baby. She is the Tribune’s special sections editor.

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