I blame myself.
I began writing Irish Firebrands in February, 2009. As part of my research, I visited Ireland* that December – and it snowed on my birthday. The landlord of the B & B told me it was the first time that had happened in 20 years. The island normally has mild maritime winters, so nobody was prepared: A quarter-inch of snow shut down the whole Republic. More snow fell after I went home. Pipes froze everywhere – half of Dublin didn’t have water. And ever since then, they’ve had some dreadful winters.
Here in Indiana, there are still several feet of snow on the ground (and it snowed again, today), but it’s March, and that means St Patrick’s Day is around the corner, with the vernal equinox trailing close behind. We may have had the most severe winter during my 14 years in Indiana, but we’ll be seeing the green, soon.
* If you’re Ireland-bound, stop at Athlumney Manor Bed & Breakfast in Navan, County Meath. I stayed there for a week, and their website doesn’t lie: http://www.athlumneymanor.com/ This is an unsolicited “celebrity endorsement” by a very satisfied customer. If I ever get to go back, that’s where you’ll find me.