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'Winter we hardly knew ye'

March 16, 2012 - Mike Donahey
One of the mildest winters I ever remember in my years as a life-long Iowan merits the title and subject.

Robins, grass peaking up through leaves and people driving convertibles have been in evidence all week and spring officially starts March 20.

Not only have convertibles been seen, with drivers soaking up the sun and breeze, but the justifiably optimistic souls were leaving them parked extended periods with the top down.

Shorts-wearers have been in abundance too, but I’m guessing some never retired their summer wardrobe. I joked with a co-worker a month ago the Community Y and Parks and Recreation might be tempted to open up the town pool.

Beware though ... one of the worst snowstorms to ever hit Iowa happened in mid-April, 1973. It was severe, shutting down many state roadways plus the University of Iowa ... a rare day in its long history when no classes were held.

Speaking of the Community Y where I moonlight ... it’s inspirational to watch a class of cancer survivors lifting weights and walking briskly around the Y track, or engaging in a tough pace on a treadmill. It’s not easy for some, but they have stuck with it for more than two months. More strength and endurance have been gained, they said and importantly, a better mindset as well.

Bicyclist Lance Armstrong helped make their gains possible through his foundation "Livestrong." Armstrong’s name may bring mixed reactions, especially regarding doping allegations made by other cyclists against him, but, regardless, as a cancer survivor, he and foundation have given thousands of survivors hope. Quick ... name the book and author I derived the blog title from. Hint — it is about one man's memory and work with a late president who served in the 20th century. Contact And Erin Go Bragh! (From Irish Gaelic, meaning Ireland forever, according to Merriam-Webster).


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