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What do you mean it’s cold?

| Friday, October 11, 2019

It’s 8 a.m., you have class in 20 minutes and you glance at the weather to decide what to wear.

South Bend: 60 degrees.

Perfect! You stand up to get dressed and if you decide on anything warmer than jeans and a t-shirt — well, then you are sadly mistaken.

Let me explain.

I’m a freshman from New City, New York. We in New York have your average four seasons. Terribly cold winters where you can always see your breath, rainy springs with giant puddles all over the place, scorching hot summers that lead to tomato-red faces and fall.

Fall, however, is different from the rest. It’s not possible to describe fall in one sentence. It’s cool and yet the sun is warm. You need leggings or jeans and yet with any physical activity more than a walk you break into a sweat. It is a beautiful time of year where you don’t choke on air trying to breathe but you won’t get frostbite outside.

Here on campus, however, I am quickly realizing that not everyone shares the same notions on fall that I possess.

In Georgia, cold mornings around 52 degrees signal the dead of winter and summers climb to 105 degree heat — if not higher. So at 9 a.m. on Tuesday morning, my friends from Atlanta left their dorms in jeans and a t-shirt … with a sweatshirt and a jacket on top. I left in a skirt and long sleeve shirt, the sun shining on my face and warming the little chill that hit my throat as I inhaled the dewy morning air.

That morning was a true eye-opener for me. Not because I think it was any more cold than I did then, but because I cannot imagine shivering at 52 degrees. I live for backyard fall football and the slight red tint your nose and fingers can take on from being outside. I couldn’t stop doing those activities simply because I was cold, there’s no way. Nor would I want to do them in any weather above 70 degrees because that’s more effort — and sweat — than it’s worth.

I also worry for my friends from Atlanta and the neighboring Southern states. Fifty-two degrees is 20 degrees above freezing, and I wouldn’t be surprised if we hit 20 below at some point this winter in South Bend.

I love the fall and the temperatures that come with it. While Notre Dame’s southern population of freshmen may be cold now, I guarantee when 52 returns in the spring, we will all be out in jeans and a t-shirt, happy to see the sun and have the chill in our throats reduce to slight instead of jarring.

The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.

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About Mannion McGinley

Mannion McGinley is a class of 2023 American Studies and Sociology major with a Journalism minor. She is a member of the Glynn Family Honors program and is Sports Department Editor at The Observer.

Contact Mannion