(Reposted, as yesterday’s version somehow had the commenting section disabled.)
A blogging brother in Christ asked this question in a recent post (here): “How do you fight the doldrums of winter?”
He wrote of some action steps he takes to keep moving forward, albeit in a slower than ideal manner when winter’s cold affects even the spirit.
I shared an action step of my own, which was as follows:
Sometimes, no matter what I do, I still feel them.
But, in general, a positive difference began about ten years ago when one of my daughters and I were discussing how annoyed we were at ourselves for all the whining we did concerning winter, and how it didn’t help.
She and I decided not to complain about winter anymore.
At first, it was silly. With forced cheerfulness we said things like, “Wow, I love it when it gets down to minus thirty!” And “Snow up to my knees is awesome!” Or “Isn’t it neat when the snow plow doesn’t come down our road till we’re stuck for a week?”
We made each other laugh with our silly remarks, and we’d correct ourselves and each other when we slipped up and griped.
But over the years, the attitude increasingly became real.
Last week, that daughter sent me a photo of herself standing at a bus stop in northern BC, a few hours north of me, waiting to catch a ride to university. It was -43 Celsius and she was smiling with white frost on her eyelashes. She looked like a proverbial ice princess.
We talked later, with laughter, about how it’s become almost a competition among us northern folk to say what coldness we’ve endured. We might not outright prefer it over a nice warm day, but there’s a hint of bragging when we can say we lived through something not normally considered pleasant.
Plus the cold makes for some good storytelling later around a fire.
Then there was the situation at my place last week. In the high minus thirties Celsius, I was burning more wood than usual, trying to keep the house warm inside. Our chimney pipe from the middle floor and up through the steep roof over the third floor is really long, our wood is a bit wet (all the wood we got last rainy spring, summer, and fall was wet, and we haven’t yet cut enough to let it season a full year before needing to use it), and there must have been a blockage of creosote. Well, maybe that should be another blog entry, as this has already gotten long. You can read it here:“Fire And Water Emergencies”.