GULFPORT -- On one side of the street downtown, carpenter Weldon Guttierrez is bundled in layers against a wind chill that dipped below freezing early Monday morning, while UPS deliveryman Steve Hernandez is strolling down the opposite sidewalk in shorts.
"I love the cold weather," Hernandez said. "It makes me feel younger. When your blood starts flowing, it takes a lot to get cold again." No, Hernandez is not from one of those frigid northern states, where they make fun of us when we shiver if the temperature falls below 55 degrees. He grew up in New Orleans.
Guttierrez, a Biloxi native, says he'd rather be hot than cold, the expected reaction in South Mississippi.
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The chill wind that blew in Sunday delivered the season's first cold snap.
The National Weather Service says temperatures are 10-15 degrees below normal east of the Mississippi. Take heart.
Sunday was the coldest day in this week's forecast. The Weather Underground reports Sunday's high in South Mississippi at 55.4 degrees. The thermometer is expected to inch above 60 degrees Monday afternoon.
It's all relative. The low temperature recorded Monday, according to the National Weather Service, was -2 degrees in Jackson Hole, Wyo.
For the rest of the holiday week, the weather service says surface temperatures will be above normal for late November.
Skies will be mostly sunny Tuesday, with a high near 68 degrees accompanied by an east wind of up to 15 mph that might make it feel cooler. While Wednesday is expected to be mostly cloudy, the low is forecast at only 61 degrees.
We'll have a typical South Mississippi Thanksgiving, practically shorts weather with partly sunny skies and a high near 71.
After today, Guttierrez will doubtless appreciate the break from winter's chill. He was perched on scaffolding under the shade of an historic building his company, Starks Contracting Co. Inc., is renovating for the law offices of Balch & Bingham on U.S. 49.
When he woke up at 6 a.m., his thought was, "It's gonna be cold." He wore three layers, topped with a fleece-lined flannel shirt and gloves.
He said the layers keep him warm and so does the thought of the turkey and dressing he packed to heat up for lunch.