O'BRIEN: Dreaming about getting away from cold weather
There are times when living here doesn't pay.
Over the next 72 hours or so, the Gem City and the surrounding area are expected to pretty much resemble a deep freeze.
It's expected to start with snow on Saturday. Follow that with a blast of arctic cold. The Weather Channel tells me that we are supposed to have a high of 2 degrees on Monday. A National Weather Service meteorologist earlier this week said Quincy would be lucky to get above zero that day.
Does it really matter who comes closer to the predicted high? It's going to be bitterly cold.
Need more proof? Here's what my Weather Channel app is telling me about the next few days:
"This may be the coldest air much of the region has experienced in nearly 20 years," read part of the text of a severe weather alert.
Will it be too cold to even send the kids to school on Monday? They've been holed up playing video games and watching TV for two weeks. It wouldn't be too surprising if many of them get an extra day of winter break, since wind chills are supposed to be well into the red numbers.
In the spirit of those "You wanna get away" commercials that Southwest Airlines used to air, here's a look at the places I would jet off to if given the chance right now to avoid all of this cold weather:
Honolulu: The islands have been a vacation destination ever since watching special editions of "Sanford & Son" and "The Brady Bunch" which were filmed there. This might be the only place in America that will avoid the arctic blast. It's supposed to be 79 and cloudy there on Monday. Sure, it will cost me more for my gas and food, but that's a trade I'm willing to make to avoid frostbite.
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: What I wouldn't give to just stand in place and sweat rather than stand in place and have tears roll out of my eyes because it is so stinking cold. Rio would fit the bill for a warm spot. It's supposed to be in the upper 80s and low 90s in Rio over the next few days. Sure, it's a little early to see any World Cup games, which happen later this year across Brazil, but standing in a sun-splashed fútbol stadium certainly beats standing in a snow-filled football stadium right now.
Sydney, Australia: I'd even eat a Vegemite sandwich if it meant not having to take in all of the cold. It's supposed to be 73 in Sydney on Monday. A guy I used to work with at one of my former papers just finished his honeymoon Down Under. Looks like there are a lot of neat things to do, none of which requires freezing.
San Juan, Puerto Rico: Take me out to the ball game. The Roberto Clemente League is just starting its playoffs. Can’t think of a better way to spend a day — with temperatures in the mid-80s like San Juan is supposed to see for the next few days — than watching a little baseball.
Buenos Aires, Argentina: Here's another place that will be plenty warm -- low 90s -- with plenty of things to do. I might be the only person who would skip going to the beach to head just outside of town to find the boyhood home of one of my basketball idols, former Chicago Bulls player Andres Nocioni.
It's nice to dream. Hopefully, we all survive this cold snap.
After all, a heat wave is coming. It might get all the way up to the freezing mark by next weekend.