Yes,f olks, that is the question. However it isn't if I want to thaw but will I ever thaw. I know; winter has only just begun but we were spoiled here during the month of November, which usually allows us to ease into the frigid temperatures of December and January. My body feels like it has been cyrogenically frozen.
It is so cold up here that cars begin to breakdown. Yesterday the signal lights in our car wouldn't work until it had been running for a half an hour. It can sometimes feel like you are driving on square tires. Have any of you ever heard of square tire syndrome? It really feels like you are driving on square tires because it is so cold out. Exhaust from other cars just hovers near the ground and makes for very reduced visibility first thing in the morning - on a cold morning.
Saskatchewanians claim our 4 seasons are as follows almost winter, dang it's winter, still winter? and construction season. In the dead of winter, we start our cars in the morning then have our showers so it is nice and warm when we are ready to leave for work.
We never have "snow days". When I was a kid it did not matter if we walked down our driveway to the bus in 3 feet of drifting snow (which we have done); the only time you got a day off school was if you lived in the country and the school bus wouldn't start or it was -40 celsius without the windchill. The town kids still had to go to school but recess was dodge ball in the gymnasium. On the days, you could feel your breath crystalize as it escaped from your blankets we kids would hover around the radio in our kitchen just waiting to hear that Joe's bus was not running that morning. On those mornings our school's population was down by 2/3 as most of the kids were from the country.
Some of my favorite winter memories:
→ going for horse-drawn sleigh rides where we would throw or push each other off the sleigh into snowbanks that were so deep all but an arm or a leg would be submerged in the snow, seeking shelter in the middle of the bush to have a weiner roast (complete with frozen cans of pepsi) and returning home to have hot chocolate and pizza buns
→ taking all the shovels and brooms we had, cleaning off our dugout and "figure skating". I use that term loosely because none of us knew how to figure skate but we had watched Brian Orser and Brian Boitano enough to know we need to pretend we had just done a killer backflip.
→ my dad getting us to pick our clothes for the day the night before and a half hour before we got up he would put our clothes over the wood stove so they would be super toasty warm.
→ making forts in the huge snowdrifts
→ one of our horses, a beautiful horse that was mixed light horse and percheron horse, would take my toque and pull it down over my face. yeah, he thought he was a funny guy.
Anyways, I have rambled enough for the evening but tomorrow I think I will tell you our family tradition for getting a Christmas tree...