Perhaps it is the fact that every visit to the United Kingdom includes multiple comments about how few holidays Americans take or just the end of the last school holiday in my daughter’s high school career, but I’ve also noticed how hard we work in the States through the lens of a new source of days off, “severe weather closures.” Every season these days contributes a share to an annual dose of unscheduled days off due to extremes of heat, cold or storm fronts that bring too much or too little water all at once to a region. If you work in a large organization, you’ve probably seen email about office closures over the last week.
Weather so bad that it is dangerous to go outside may be nature’s way to tell us to relax a bit more. That said, I remember standing on the curb waiting for the school bus in Virginia, Minnesota back in the 1960s, when it seemed to be -30 degrees below 0 Fahrenheit. And it was uphill both ways to the house. Maybe we’re just soft.