I moved into a beach house during a rare Californian blizzard

Hermosa beach pier at night, looking onto Hermosa Beach homes

The last time California issued a blizzard warning was in 1989, when I was four, when I was living in the landlocked state of Missouri and probably had already experienced a few blizzards of my own.

That’s actually why I wanted to leave Missouri and finally did, because it gets so cold and the weather is so unpredictable. In fact, there’s a saying in MO that if you’re tired of the weather all you have to do is wait thirty minutes for it to change. That mostly holds up. But it usually changes from either super humid to super cold, with little days of bliss in-between, which is super annoying. Screw that.

So I finally did, at the age of 26. I fucked off for two years on the cold coasts in South Korea, then settled in the constantly cold city of Bonn in Germany for five years and finally jumped to California, where I’ve been living for three years, mostly in downtown LA, some 30 minutes to an hour away from the beach depending on the never-ending traffic.

After all that time — 11 years and some change — I finally made it to Hermosa Beach, though right in time for Southern California’s first blizzard in 33 years, a Californian blizzard. Shit.

And the place is great on my limited budget, don’t get me wrong. I can see the coast if I creak my neck around the bigger houses and if I look past the stop sign conveniently blocking the view of the sand. But it gets cold, and the heater doesn’t really work.

In Korea, the weather also gets cold. But Koreans adapt to it by using the very efficient (not energy efficient though) ondol system, which is an underfloor heating system that keeps the feet and body warm during their outrageously cold winter months. I kinda enjoyed using it, if I’m being honest.

My beach house, on the other hand, has a radiator that heats a 2-foot radius amount of air around it. If I bundle up and stand near the radiator when the rest of the house drops to below 50 degrees, I can feel it, though uncomfortably.

And while I recently bought a space heater that can be plugged into an outlet near the bed or couch, the fear of a blanket or throw pillow catching ablaze does enter my head and jolt me awake like I imagine how a smoker feels when they fall asleep with a cigarette in their mouth. I haven’t been able to rest easily.

Again, though, it’s not all bad. There’s still the beach! And it’s literally 5 minutes away. People would kill for that opportunity. Being the emotional pessimist that I can be though, I can’t help but think the timing of the move has to mean something. I know it has nothing to do with me, and that we’re all doomed in the coming climate apocalypse. But still, I have the right to complain, if even just a little.

Shay Michael
Shay Michael

Writing about my life.

4 responses to “I moved into a beach house during a rare Californian blizzard”

  1. […] like being at the center of those drinks and conversations the best I can. So, when I moved into my Southern California beach house in the dead of winter, I thought throwing a housewarming party to bring on warmer weather in […]

  2. […] is a joke and they wouldn’t work on me without this or that. I’m still figuring out the California health care system […]

  3. […] was a few weeks ago when moving into the beach house that I realized that I may in fact be a little, if I have to admit it here and now … aghhhhhhh […]

  4. […] recently took up walking since moving near the beach earlier this year. It’s an old hobby of mine, but one I couldn’t enjoy for two years […]

Leave a Reply

The HoliShay Blog

Everyday's a HoliShay