Friday, January 16, 2009

A word on the weather

So given the domain name of this blog, I think it might be necessary to give my friends at home some perspective on this friendly climate we have in Sackville, New Brunswick, Canada. (Did I mention it's January? What sort of idiotic American goes anywhere north of Maine in January?)

It is currently -29 C outside. For my Fahrenheit-oriented friends (and for myself)--that's -20.2 F. The two systems even out at -40.

The people over in northern Minnesota and the prairies are probably scoffing over at this, but for a girl from Phoenix/SE PA/Washington DC, this isn't just cold. This is the kind of cold that, frankly, will kick your ass. It's even hard to breathe in this weather because your lungs are like "What the hell is that? Air that's 29 degrees below freezing? Yeah, screw that." and then cough every breath back up. It is necessary to wear at least 2 layers (depending on how good your coat is), a thick scarf, mittens (they are much warmer than gloves...I still need to buy some), and, if you're smart, tights or long underwear (I am not smart and do not own either one of these). And, of course, a tuque (winter hat). A good one. That covers your ears because if you don't have one, I promise you, they're going to freeze and fall off your head (at least that's what it feels like...lesson learned the hard way).

And a little warning about Sackville (also learned the hard way, despite the fact that a friend told me the first day I was here). Don't trust the forecast. Almost every day, the low has dipped below the predicted low (today, -22 C) and/or the high has spiked above the high (max so far about 3 C). Bring extra layers.

I am amazed at how people manage to adapt to climate changes. I'm convinced that humans are the most durable creatures on Earth, because we survive in 49 C/120 F (and yes, I've been in that kind of weather--frequently) and conditions where your snot and breath freeze when you walk outside. And I've also got to hand it to the ducks in the nearby Waterfowl Park--they were just chilling (very literally) in the grass the other day, like nothing special was going on.

The world's really an amazing place.

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