By Patrick Murphy

If there’s one thing we can all talk about it’s the weather.

It’s too hot, too cold, too dry, too wet, but rarely just right.

I did, however, find the perfect weather in Arizona in February.

Our annual get-away to visit family and friends was timed perfectly for Arizona.

We landed on a day when the temperature reached 80, and it stayed in the 70s the rest of our vacation.

If we were in Arizona at the perfect time, our timing to return to Nebraska was the opposite, and in my estimation, two months too soon.

We came home to snow and bone-chilling cold that just won’t leave.

In Arizona every morning I woke up and went for a run. Even though the temperatures were in the upper 30s, it felt great to be outside.

We stayed with my mother-in-law, who lives in a retirement community, so every day I would pass others who were out for a walk, taking their dogs for walks or driving their carts to the golf course.

We waved and greeted each other “good morning,” but my favorite exchange was with a gentleman I passed. We said good morning to each other, and I asked how are you? 

His response: “Welp, still married.”

That was my laugh for the day. Everyone seemed to be in a good mood, and I’m sure it’s because of the weather.

Someday I want to wake up every morning during winter and be able to go for a run or walk, knowing the upper 30s was going to be the coldest part of the day.

I look over my computer monitor and out the window, and it’s snowing, and my watch says the temperature is -4.

I cannot wait until the weather warms up here. Right now, I can only dream about a time when I complain about the heat and humidity.

They say the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence, but in Arizona, grass is a rare site. Most yards are filled with decorative rocks. Another plus, no mowing.

As I ran around the community, I saw license plates from all over the country and Canada; flags and signs of various universities, including Nebraska and Iowa, and sports memorabilia from all over.

It is a melting pot of people, all looking to escape the cold. 

I want to be one of those people some day.

I want to be able to step outside in winter and not have to worry about how cold I’m going to be. The only snow I want to see is what I see on television.

The older I get the more I really cannot stand winter and being cold. Long gone are the days of celebrating snow days and playing in the snow, only coming inside long enough to drink hot cocoa.

For now, all I have are my memories of running in Arizona - and wondering if that guy is still married.

Patrick Murphy, editor-publisher of the Humphrey Democrat and Newman Grove Reporter in Nebraska, is a former assistant managing editor at The Telegram.