Well on Wednesday it seems we went down to MINUS 30 oC with the wind chill, coldest it's been so far this year, well for our area. Back on January 4th, Edmonton, Alberta had temperatures down to MINUS 50 oC. Now that is cold, it's even cold enough that if you have moisture up your nose, that even freezes........too graphic?
However the funny thing is although it is cold, I always feel colder in Britain. Over here it is a dry cold, whereas in Britain it is a damp cold. I don't know if its because I am getting older, but the damp cold gets into my bones.
I know when my mother and step-father have been over in the winter, they say it's cold, but not bone chilling cold. The first winter we spent in Canada we (me and dh) walked around in our "winter" (really fall/autumn weight) jackets from Britain. We didn't find it that cold.
Now due to the fact that I am constantly having hot flashes, I rarely wear my winter coat. I must admit the furnace has been on an awful lot today, well a lot for us. I keep the heat on at 20 oC/78 oF, which I find comfortable. However most people who come to the house make sure they wear a sweater, as they find it cold. I am wandering around with a t-shirt on, and they are wearing a thick sweater!!!
Now for a couple of funny stories about the first winter when we arrived in Canada. So one morning, I go to start the car to warm it up before I go to work, and it wouldn't start. I am not mechanically minded and had NO IDEA what on earth could be wrong with it. Luckily our neighbour, Ben, was out and asked what was up and I tell him the car won't start. He asks me how much gas I have in my car and I tell him it was below half a tank. He says go and get your hairdryer????? So off I go and get it and we plug it in and he starts to blow dry these pipes in my car.
It turns out that the gas lines were frozen as I had let the gas tank go below half full and the condensation in the pipes had frozen. Now I know there is a more technical explanation, but that was all I understood. He gave me some anti-freeze for my gas tank, and told me to never let it go under half a tank.
Now fast forward on 19 years, anti freeze is now in gas in the winter, so no need to add it. However to this day I never ever let my gas tank go below half in the winter. I wish I had, had a video camera, as family back in Britain would have wondered what on earth I was doing blow drying my car!!!
By the way where ds lives (four hours north of us), they plug their cars into an electrical socket so they will start in a morning. Again there is a technical reason why, maybe someone would be kind enough to explain it?
Second STUPID story, and this one is a classic. So one day I was coming out of work, again in winter and it is raining. So I put up my umbrella and go tottering to the car park. All the while thinking, gosh it is slippery. Get to my car and it is covered with ice, as are the other cars in the parking lot. I remember just standing there thinking, "what is going on?" It's raining and everything is covered in ice. I look up to the sky and it's raining, but where is this ice coming from?
A guy walks by and obviously sees I am puzzled about something, so I say to him, I don't understand what's going on. He says it's freezing rain....I quickly say I am new to the country, so at least I have given him a reason for being a total dimwit.
Freezing rain looks beautiful when you see it on the trees and shrubs, however freezing rain is also very, very dangerous to drive in and can cause millions of dollars worth of damage.
Here is an explanation of how rain turns to freezing rain:
Freezing rain is a type of precipitation that begins as snow at higher altitude, falling from a cloud towards earth, melts completely on its way down while passing through a layer of air above freezing temperature, and then encounters a layer below freezing at a lower level to become supercooled. This water will then freeze upon impact with any object it encounters. The ice can accumulate to a thickness of several centimetres, called glaze ice. The METAR code for freezing rain is FZRA. (see freezing drizzle for another way of forming ice accretion)
See this link for more info.
So there you go a rambling post about the weather.........I am sure the expats over here have more funny stories about their first winter over here?