The fiercest days of winter can easily whip, pierce and blow through one’s personal comfort zone. Yet suffering through the season is a point of pride in a country like Canada. And it should be. Having to endure the cold makes a (wo)man of you. It illuminates the fact that there are some things we can’t conquer, brings about unduplicatable self-discovery and contains all kinds of fun we’re hard-pressed to find during the easy-breezing days of summer.
The first soft snowfall of the year, gently coating the world outside in a thin, white cushion has to be one of the more pleasant walking experiences of any season. Winter in general contains some of the best journeying by foot. The fresh crunch of being the original explorer to blaze a footpath in an ankle-high pile of snow, the enhanced bright lights of a chilly night and the instinctual bumping of jackets with a buddy to share warmth as you venture through the world side by side are just a few of the small joys.
One might feel like everything, including thought, freezes during the long winter months. Sometimes it can be hard to see that despite how unbelievably frosted your face is, the experience of being chilled to the bone is a reprieve from thinking about all of the things you have to, should have or wish you had done. Sub-zero temperatures force us to live in the now.
Sometimes it gets so cold that you lose sense of every finger, every extremity. You know they’re there, but each attempt to move them only sends back the slightest recognizable signal to your brain. Losing control of one’s senses is something elsewise impossible without the application of prescription or designer chemical drugs. So, not only does the winter save you funds, it helps bring about an altered state of mind.
Perhaps not everyone’s ideal form of fun involves altered states, but let us not forget skiing, snowboarding, tobogganing, impromptu snowball fights or, on the flip side, being able to spend a cozy night indoors without the social pressure of “… but it’s so warm out, you have to join us!”
We’re facing the last of truly cold days. With predictions of a 5 degree celsius increase in global temperature within the century and staple summer weather becoming winter norms, it’s not too far-fetched to think that we’ll be reminiscing in our elder years about how when we were kids, there was snow. So, revel in it while it’s here. Make angels, nail your friends in the face with a nicely packed ball of white powder during a chilly winter walk, and enjoy that you can always find fun ways to warm up. As you might find, when the AC breaks mid-August, you’ll be hard-pressed cooling down.