The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

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January 26, 2014

Folks find ways to keep busy during cold snap

When winter hits, it might seem like everything from fun to traffic comes to a screeching halt. Being stuck at home doesn’t offer too many ways to pass the time, but locals say they’ve kept themselves sane.  

“I read, played video games, and tried not to look outside,” Takayla Nary of Beckley said. “I don’t like winter or the snow. I do anything that is going to keep me away from the windows. Every day that I’ve come to work for the last couple of weeks, I’ve seen people sliding on the roads. It’s bleak, sad, and I don’t like it.

“I just like my days off because then you don’t have to worry about getting hurt. You can just sip hot cocoa and build a snowman.”

Others say they’re hoping something good comes out of the bad weather.

“I think this cold weather will kill a lot of insects,” Robert Thomas of Oak Hill said. “I’m a gardener, so I’m hoping for that. I’ve kept myself busy just about every way I can. I do woodworking and I’ve spent a lot of time in the shop lately.

“These low temperatures aren’t doing much to help keep the electric bill down, though,” Thomas added with a laugh.

Some people said work was the only thing keeping them sane.

“I pretty much live at work, so that keeps me busy,” James Gautier of Beckley said. “It just sucks how cold it is.

“Probably the coolest thing is that the mall closed one day. That was cool because I got paid to be off from work.”

One man says he decided to get out of the house and see a movie and get some peace from home.

“This is the first time that we’ve got to go out in a while,” Steve Ingram of Ansted said. “The kids are always home because of these snow days. They need to be at school. I’m tired of the general conditions and that it’s so cold.”

According to a manager at Marquee Cinemas in Beckley, people haven’t been braving the elements lately to catch a flick.

“It’s obviously because of the weather,” Ken Cooper said. “Last week was one of the best weeks that we’ve had in a while. Since most of the movies playing this week have been out for a while, people don’t really want to come out in this bad weather to go to the movies.”

If you do decide to make the trip to the movies, Cooper says “The Nut Job” is the most popular family film and “Lone Survivor” is the most popular adult film right now.

Some said they don’t care about the weather at all anymore.

“I’m over it,” Valerie Obugene of Mount Hope said. “I keep busy. I crochet. I knit. I watch some TV and play a few games. It hasn’t run me crazy yet. I just don’t like this weather. I love looking at the snow outside the window and that’s it.”

“I belong at the beach,” Amy Biere of Beckley said. “I work a lot, so that keeps me busy. I work 50 hours a week and I go to school.

 “I don’t like driving in this weather when I have to go work. I’m a horrible driver in the snow.”

Not everyone says they hate the snow, though.

“I’m an avid skier so I enjoy going to Winterplace and just skiing constantly,” James Martin of Mullens said. “I also like snowboarding and stuff like that. Coming to work and going to work out down at LA East have also kept me busy.

“The roads are the worst part of winter, by far. Coming to work today they were extremely slick. Sliding around all over the place is by far the worst part.”

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