An English In Kentucky



















December 11th 2009

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    The Almanac would record 18 degrees Fahrenheit as the sun rose this morning, and for some reason I always find it comforting to follow the established wisdom which suggests that in the last Ice Age the part of Kentucky where I live was free of permanent ice.  

    But with all things weather related there is politics.   So I have to respect those who wake up on a cold morning here in Kentucky comforted by the idea that this part of Kentucky one hundred thousand years ago was bound by year round ice.

    Within the framework of these two attitudes toward the southern extent of the last Ice Age I might grasp my own position as belonging to the environment through which life's course has taken me.  I can see that perhaps had I been raised on the rocky shores of the Arctic Ocean, I could wake on a cold morning here in Kentucky, recall the good old days, and I might well be comforted by the idea that one hundred thousand years ago this place was more like home.



    Then there is that oddity of home.  That peculiar relationship one develops with place.  Because when on those rare occasions I am touched by people who now live far away and with whom I once shared time, I find myself well contented by the idea that where I live now the weather is hotter and colder and more dramatic.

    "Minus seven Celsius?"  I'll say, "That's not cold!!"  And I'll go on to remark on colder and colder mornings until I reach points of exaggeration that may well surprise the National Weather Service here in the United States.

    The reaction over there tends toward those emotions summed by "Well! You guys are used to it." Or, "You have all the right clothes."  Or, "Well! I have never even seen snow."

    For reasons that probably reflect very poorly on my character, this reaction from others frustrates me.  

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tim candler

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(Fahrenheit to Celsius