Finding ways to enjoy autumn despite cold weather


Am I dramatic by nature? Yes. But does that invalidate my opinion that it is uncharacteristically cold this October in Williamsburg? No. It’s absolutely freezing, and I hope we can all agree on that.

My morning routine has consisted of trying on various sweaters and sweatshirts until I have found one versatile enough to be warm enough for outside, yet breathable enough that I can avoid heatstroke indoors and in the afternoon. While mornings can fall to as low as 40 degrees, some afternoons have climbed as high as 70 degrees. Layers are a necessity for this turbulent weather pattern.

As a freshman from New Jersey, this is my first autumn in Virginia. Since this is considered to be the South, I assumed that it would be at least a little bit warmer than what I am used to. That was true through September and the beginning of October, but ever since fall break, that assumption has been proved to be inaccurate. It’s like someone flipped a switch, and it suddenly became insanely cold. My parents told me they are experiencing the same crazy weather, but at least they had more of a transition between the seasons.

I have even overheard upperclassmen asking their parents to send them warmer clothes through the mail because waiting until Thanksgiving to exchange wardrobes is no longer an option. Even those familiar with the area are thrown off by this weather. So, this is not simply one of those “College of William and Mary things.”

Why is it so uncharacteristically cold this autumn? Answers range from climate change to the simple unpredictability of the weather. Either way, it is pretty strange that I can see my breath most mornings, even though most of the trees still have green leaves. At this point, my biggest concern is that the temperatures will continue to drop so much that, by the time it becomes December and January, walking across campus will be torturous.

Until then, I am trying my best to stick the weather out. My hat and scarf go everywhere with me as my friends and I try to make the most of our time on campus before we will have to shut ourselves inside for winter. We have been to the farmer’s market and gone on various excursions throughout Colonial Williamsburg. Number one on my list is Mermaid Books, but I feel as if it is always closed when I try to go. The Barnes and Noble is always a great stop, too, because I can immediately buy a hot drink if necessary after a walk in the chilly air. Honestly, my favorite fall tradition thus far has been watching movies with my friends in our dorm — huddled up in our blankets and enjoying our microwave popcorn and Sadler desserts that we have hoarded. This weekend, we had a “Halloweentown” marathon.

Others have spent the season going to pumpkin patches and Halloween parties. I’m not sure how much I would enjoy them myself — mostly due to the fact that both include walking outside in the cold — but the pictures that everyone posts on Instagram definitely show them having a great time.

I hope the weather does not impede on these activities as the next month passes and the countdown to Christmas begins, but I know that it is definitely a possibility. I recommend spending nights how you want to now because as time goes on, I bet that no one will want to do anything outside with you.

Or maybe that’s just me. I would apologize, but I’m not exactly sorry. It’s cold.

Email Alyssa Slovin at

Previous articleJoy, love outweighs pain in long-distance relationships
Next articleAutumn in Williamsburg brings happiness and fun for those at the College
Avatar photo
Opinions Editor Alyssa Slovin ’22 is double majoring in marketing and English at the College of William and Mary, and she plans on working in book publishing or marketing after graduation. When she’s not spending time writing, editing and designing for the newspaper and Flat Hat Magazine — where she serves as an Editor-in-Chief — Alyssa thrives off talking to her friends, reading, watching YouTube, organizing and cooking. Keep up with her Opinions articles to read about all types of issues that concern campus, with articles spanning the importance of a woman’s right to choose and the dangers of campus brick thieves.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here