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Is This Above Average?

Katelyn Harrop
IPR Producer Matt Alvarez asked for your advice to prepare for his first Iowa winter. Today, he's confused.

Dear Experienced Iowans, 

What gives with the balmy weather? I’m writing to you from Iowa City, and there is no snow to be found.

I guess you can say I am fortunate. So far this winter has greeted me with unexpected sunny days, unseasonably warm temperatures and a Christmas so mild it truly reminded me of Texas.

Seriously, what was up with that day? I wore shorts and went for a run. 

Yes, we’ve had our share of overcast days and snow. I even fell off my bike when I lost control going over a small patch of ice, but I got back up haven’t fallen since. It makes me confident that I can take anything this state will throw at me.

My colleague says they wants me to experience just one day of -40 degree temperatures, walk a mile in their shoes, feel their pain from winters past. I can’t say I blame them. A part of me really wants the day to come.

My winter coach had so many lessons and excursions planned for the next few months that it had me clinging to my phone and checking my weather app. I was on the look out for the next cold front that would blanket my neighborhood in snow or a fresh coat of ice. Dare I say that I was starting to get excited?

In my first few letters, I sent out a cry for help, and you gave me great advice. I prepared for what I expected to be my first real winter and got new tires, mittens, a heavy winter coat, snow goggles for my bike ride into work, headgear, Vitamin D, thermals, yak tracks and snow boots. I was ready to brag to my friends and family in Texas about what I’d overcome this year in Iowa.

The forecast for next week looks both promising and terrifying. I may regret that I penned this letter, and we’ll see if I truly get what I wished for. Even if it isn’t that cold, I do think I’m becoming a true Iowan. I’m definitely spending a lot of time obsessing about the weather right now.

Matt Alvarez   

Matthew was a producer for IPR's River to River and Talk of Iowa