If you’re from the South, you know how to prepare for hurricanes, tornadoes, 100-degree summers, and the occasional earthquake (like that 5.8-magnitude quake back in 2011). Blizzards? Not snow much. So here’s a helpful winter prep guide created by Southerners for Southerners.
Step 1: Check Your Weather App Every 30 Seconds
If snow is on the radar, the forecast usually goes like this: “The Raleigh area could see between a trace and three inches during this storm.” Three inches might not sound like a lot, but even a snow flurry is enough to keep Wake County kids out of school for a week. That’s why you should refresh your weather app constantly: to see whether we’ll get no snow or a blizzard.
Bonus tip: While you’re mentally preparing for wintry weather, get into a heated debate with your friends, classmates, and coworkers over how much snow will fall. Longtime Raleigh locals know that snow tends to skip right over us.
Step 2: Buy Bread and Milk, Even If You Don’t Need It
Do we Southerners need a two-week supply of these “essentials”? No. Will we buy them just in case? You bet. When it snows here in North Carolina, we’re prepared to be shut in for at least three days. After all, the roads are terrible in the snow! (Actually, there’s a good reason for that.)
Bonus tip: Act fast. If you don’t drive out to the grocery store as soon as Greg Fishel says it’s going to snow, you’ll only find empty shelves.
Step 3: Drive at Least 10 Under the Speed Limit
If temperatures drop, so should your speed. Subfreezing temperatures and snow make for slick roads, and you don’t want to end up on the side of the road with a missing fender — or worse, with a burning car. Don’t become the next Raleigh blizzard meme.
Bonus tip: Just don’t drive. At all. Combine slow speeds with a few flurries (or inches of snow) and you have a recipe for a loooooooong commute home.
Step 4: When It Starts Snowing, Let the World Know
If you didn’t document the #snowpocalypse on Twitter, Instagram, or Snapchat, did it actually happen? Once there are enough flakes outside for a good photo, take a picture to show the snowfall to your friends — who are doing the exact same thing. Be prepared for a flood of Facebook posts that say “It’s snowing!”
Bonus tip: Add an exaggerated caption so all of your Northern friends can make fun of your state’s winter weather prep.
Step 5: Perfect the Fine Art of Layering
Since the temperature rarely drops below 30 degrees here in the South, we don’t own any article of clothing heavier than a sweatshirt. If you’re going to step outside, be sure to wear two pairs of everything: socks, pants, shirts, gloves, scarves, hats…
Bonus tip: Have you realized how little winter clothes you own after you’re already snowed in? Improvise. Wrap your sneakers in plastic bags for waterproofing and wear so many coats that you look like the kid from A Christmas Story.
Step 6: Catch Up on Responsibilities (AKA Netflix)
There’s snow on the ground, you’ve stocked up on bread and milk, and you’re not planning to step outside anytime soon. Time to catch up on work… which means binge-watching an entire season of the newest Netflix shows. It’s not everyday that you can relax on a weekday, right?
Bonus tip: Do 15 minutes of work between episodes to convince yourself that you’re being productive.
Stay Safe During the Blizzard, Friends!
If you have to commute to school or work during the snowstorm, tell us how you’re prepping. We’d love to hear about it! If you’re not originally from the South but now live in Raleigh, we’d love to hear your thoughts about making the commute easier! Leave us a comment below.