It wasn’t so much the cold …
As it was the lack of sun.
While I enjoyed every minute of my winter solstice stay up in Maryland, and the Piedmont Plateau country to be more specific, it was the lack of sun more than the cold that wore me down. On several hikes, despite it being mid day and not rainy, I simply couldn’t find the sun. The clouds and the fog were that dense. Then came the brisker days when sun was out but it didn’t give much warmth. Or more correctly stated, it gave no warmth at all so long as I was walking away from it, leaving me to wonder why I didn’t wear another layer of clothes. Then came the surprise: On the return trip, the shining sun on my face made all the difference. I actually had to strip down a layer.
I know how it all is: It rises, it falls, it rises again. At some point we take the sun for granted. Don’t! The tiniest of sliver made all the difference up north. We most value the things we lack. Living in the land of Florida sunshine I forgot that. Traveling reminds us of the smallest things.