When my wife and I were dating in college, I attended her weather lecture. Weird, I know; I was a visual arts major. It was an opportunity to fill in an hour or two between my own classes, plus a chance to spend some time with this lovely woman. I have no idea if the professor knew that I wasn’t enrolled, although I suspect that he may have suspected as such, considering my repeated absence on testing days.

Meteorologically speaking, there is Cold and then there is the I Wish that I Lived Somewhere Else, Like the Desert variety of cold. This week is shaping up like the latter of the two. I may have learned the distinction between each, within the structure of that class, or this knowledge may have come to me, naturally, from living in Pennsylvania. Either way, I can’t stand cold weather in any shape or form, of that I’m certain.

In the world of weather, this week is a doozy, and—thus far, anyway—I’m hating every moment of the so-called Bomb Cyclone or whatever you call the relentless system of snow, sleet, bone-chilling winds, and negative temperatures hovering around -4° F, as the Cyclone Bomb Bunch slowly smothers the East Coast, from Maine to Florida.

I hate all of those conditions, hate them all, and I’m not amused.

I suppose that if my furnace heating line wasn’t frozen solid, and our home maintained a reasonable level of self-sustainable heat, I may label the weather pattern of this week as Seasonally Interesting or Of Moderate Fascination. Yes, I can imagine sipping my hot chocolate with ample marshmallows from the warm black leather couch, observing the beauty of a white winter, and commenting on the delightfulness of not having to leave the house, under such horrid meteorological circumstances.

In the depth of winter I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer ~ Albert Camus

Although, life must go on, right? We can’t simply stop living or functioning because of the weather? As much as we attempt to stay home to regulate the fickle home heating systems, other occasions warrant a trip outside into the imminent arctic tundra.

Within the necessity of an adventure into the negative temperatures beyond my front door—and a required errand run, to here and there—I seize an opportunity to photograph my lovely daughter, who happens to be a spitting image of my beautiful wife. I love this new winter coat, it’s really adorable, insomuch as I picked it out and purchased it for her.

While I’m busy complaining like a grumpy old man about the cold, I am reminded of another adventure that our family experienced this year: our trip into the bowels of Death Valley National Park, nestled in the Mojave Desert, experiencing the death-inducing temperature of 131° F—an example of the opposite extreme.

So which would I prefer? It’s difficult to say, and it’s a really tough call, but right now I wish I were too hot rather than too cold.