By Katya Agatucci | The Broadside (Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org)
Bend, Oregon. Upper Left USA. Central Oregon.
We are Bendites, right? I have been living in Bend for 17 years now and I still have trouble with understanding what exactly that means.
Does that mean a coffee-shop-dwelling, Patagonia-wearing, The Lot-eating, snowboarder-skier?
My blood probably runs with a healthy percentage of coffee by now, my black Patagonia puffy is my best friend, I enjoy loaded fries and good Thai from The Lot, but I have never found myself up at Mt. Bachelor.
I’ve lived in Bend most of my life, yet the thought of snow and any activities in it repels me.
In the last few years, when I find myself explaining this to others when it comes time to buy season passes to the mountain or skip classes and go snowboarding, the looks and reactions that I get are perpetually the same.
How can I have lived in Bend for so long and have never been up to the mountain to snowboard? Why do I live here if I despise snow so much? You might be thinking, “Move if you hate the snow.”
Yeah, yeah, yeah. I get it. I’m weird if I don’t like snow and live in Central Oregon. But why should this be considered weird?
I missed almost two weeks of school last year because of our series of Snowmageddon storms. If I take a shower and have to go anywhere outside right after, my hair will promptly turn into curly icicles.
Driving is a nightmare in the snow. I can’t go anywhere without going 20 miles under the speed limit.
To make things worse, after two days of snow, the weather typically warms and it turns into brown mushy slush that just melts and refreezes over and over in a vicious cycle. No thanks.
These reactions might just be from my personal experience growing up with kids who are always participating in snow sports or getting excited when the first snowfall hits Central Oregon soil. It might be because I openly display my loathing towards snow. It also might be because I seldom have met anyone, besides those in my family, who hates snow as much as I do.
Is part of being a “Bendite” participating in and loving all things snow? Are there any like-minded people out there who feel the same frustration with winter and the snow it brings?
For all of you who are first-year students traveling from another state, I want to know your opinion on Bend weather and how you are adjusting. Or, if you’re a Bend native with a black-sheep attitude toward winter, like me, share your pain. Winter is coming, be prepared. ■