2 min read

The False Spring That Is Followed By Cold Rains

Take heed of each day in March. It will try to catch you unawares.
A rain-bedraggled pigeon faces the elements in the midst of a pedestrian crosswalk.
Do not be caught unawares by the duplicitous end of winter (photo of potential March conditions by Robert S/Flickr)

The early days of spring separate the people who check the temperature before leaving home from those who are adamant that it is spring. No, they will not wear the winter coat—possibly already dropped off for the season at the dry cleaner, even though the temperature has again dipped below freezing and the wind chills as it whips down the avenues, finding the weaknesses in hoodies and jean jackets. Others, however, reading the low degrees on their phones, did not pay heed to the bright sun of the dawning spring. They suffer and sweat in parkas and remove scarves that then drag to the ground like burdens they are cursed to carry.

Then the rains come and everyone is at March’s mercy. Frigid, but refusing to be the more picturesque snow, the rain falls in sheets, catching the whole city off guard. Wool coats are bogged down; sneakers, only recently traded for the winter boots now foolishly abandoned in closets, are ruined. You could use an umbrella, but the rain comes in sideways, leaving skin clammy and teeth chattering. These are not the April showers with their promise of flowers, these are the last gurgling gasps of winter. The rain claws against the prepared and unprepared alike with stony talons.

Take heed of each day in March. It will try to catch you unawares. Be clever with your layers, wear t-shirts under puffy jackets, pack an umbrella on a blue sky day, sport galoshes whenever you like, and squeak defiantly across polished floors, the hideous noise announcing that you are ready.

NYC meteorology legend Storm Field breaks down the fickle turns of temperature on March 8, 1978. Storm and his father, Dr. Frank Field, were competing weathermen on WABC and WNBC in the 1970s. Image via NewsActive3