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Cold, Intense and Byrrh

Miami International Airport reported a high of 36 today, the coldest day in 86 years. And I suspect it was far more difficult for the huddled Miamites to deal with their weather than it is for us in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire to deal with ours. Everything may be relative, but we embrace winter and welcome it. This past weekend Alton Bay Sea Plane Base (B18) became operational when it froze sufficiently for snow plows to clear an ice runway. I saw a light plane land this afternoon, first of the season for me. The Lakes Region boast extensive cross country ski trails thanks to the numerous centuries old forgotten roads and the maintenance of snow mobile clubs. The world of the woods can be very quiet at this time of year. The white bark of the birch and the darker forest of pine, fir and spruce exaggerate the stillness making a stark contrast to what must be taking place in the Sunbelt. At the same time I can feel some concern for the Mid-westerners and the minus 50 degree wind chills. New Hampshire is certainly a grand place to be in the winter. Fresh snow on Mount Washington and other peaks gleam in the sunshine and softly glow at sunset. Grandeur, color and spaciousness beyond the ability to fully grasp. A new friend of mine recently relocated from an eastern city which I wont name, though familiar to the whole world, to an Adirondack cabin near Lake Winnipesaukee. He has since affirmed to me what he had already suspected, namely that a home office with a lake and Mountain View far outstrips a corner office in a skyscraper. Balanced accessibility, a new sociological phenomenon. Jim Ferriman

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