Thursday, 25 November 2010

Start Gathering Your Nuts, People.

The first day of winter is set for December 21st this year. So why does it feel like Old Man Winter has decided to come crash the party early, even if he hasn’t brought the S*** yet? Clean it up people, I’m talkin’ about the icy white stuff there.

Let’s face it, besides the green grass, there’s not much left that’s glamorous or beautiful about fall anymore. Now it’s time to wait for the white to come and monochrome our normally colourful and lush slice of the world for a few months.

It seems that we’re going from tank tops to turtle necks without so much as a three quarter sleeve sweater set in between (not that I own such a thing.). Attractive fall fashions will quickly become hidden under uncomely layers of wool, cotton, fleece and thermal, and the more the better. There will be no disguising a smart outfit underneath all the layers. This is about survival, friends.

When I moved to Canada in 2002 I was so charmed by the thought of an actual white winter that I couldn’t wait for those first fluffy flakes to fall. The irony of that year was that we had zero snow on Christmas day. My first white Christmas in Canada was no such thing.

When the snow came at last, I played, and played hard. I was so excited to be able to walk out my front door and across the lawn to slide down the hill into the field below. I snow angel-ed and played fetch-the-snowball with our dog, Chip. I revelled in the fresh, crisp snow and how alive the cold snap of the air made me feel. My first white winter in Canada was absolutely magical for me, even if my husband did shake his head and tell me often… “Just wait. The charm will wear off.”

“Never!” I’d cry with glee and pelt him with a snowball for trying to Grinchify my winter fun. That year, my party ended when I slid on my saucer down a hill, across an ice patch and into the barbed wire fence at the end of the pasture. Icy barbed wire in the bum does not define winter charm, but it does make for an interesting scar.

The following year as I played with my dog, I slipped on an snow-covered ice hill and went down on my left knee cap, cracking it. My dog, in all his excitement, managed to lift his leg and pee on me.

Winter fun now = pain and humiliation. Winter fun SO over.

The following year I slid the car off the road a couple of times while learning to manoeuvre the treacherous paths we call roads during frozen rain storms, blizzards or a combination of both at the same time. The only fun I found in that was using very creative words in my prayers when begging my car to stay on the road.

So now my knee hurts every winter, and I work from home out of pure fright and need for life preservation.

If you see me out during the months of the white-out – I’ll be the one in a helmet, elbow and knee protection, spiked shoes for grip and a big long coat to cover my skin so it won’t burn in the wind. Basically, I’ll be the freaky Sasquatch-looking thing until March. See you then, people.

Start gathering your nuts.