We live in Minnesota where the winters are pretty dark & cold. January is the toughest month for brutal weather and this past week we had temperatures that exceeded Antarctica for their frigidity. Schools closed. Businesses closed. Even the USPS shut down. And me? I got out and enjoyed the nastiness!
You can’t change the weather, so you might as well enjoy it. Rather than being stuck inside all day, friends and I got out searching local parks in the city’s annual Winter Carnival Treasure Hunt. It’s something we have been doing for years. I even included it on my early retirement ‘not bored’ list of things to do three years ago.
Yes, it was down to -25 F / -53 wind chill when we were out searching. No, we didn’t find the $10K Treasure Hunt Prize. But we did bundle up plenty warm and had a great adventure. Some of our (secret) exploits even made the front page of the Sunday Metro newspaper.
We also did a little science for some frosty fun. My wife suggested we try the classic cold weather experiment to see if you can really hammer a nail through a board with a banana that’s been left out all night. It turns out you can. Below is the evidence. We made a video of it and watched it go sort of went viral with dozens of people sharing the video online and thousands of people watching it.
Last night we checked out the amazing ice sculptures on display in our downtown and this weekend we’ll go to see the snow sculpture competition at our State Fairgrounds. What people can carve out of snow & ice blocks is pretty amazing. Last year they even built a 10 story palace of ice. It’s really cool when these are lit up at night.
I’ve friends that snowbird to warmer climates in the wintertime to escape the Minnesota cold. We went on a two-week trip to the Caribbean earlier in the month with our son. I don’t blame them at all. Still, if we are going to live in a cold state, I’m going to do my best to take it all in.
Early retirement is like all aspects of life – it’s only boring if you let it be!
Image Credit: (c) MrFireStation.com