December 27, 2008

In the bleak midwinter

Oh, is it cold! For over two weeks now the mercury hasn't risen above -25 C. Even by Edmonton standards, this is extreme weather for so early in the season, and it makes me fearful for what horrors January has in store for us. I've lived through one of Edmonton's notorious deep freezes, but then I was unemployed and never had to leave my house. Now I actually have to go out in it, and walk the dog, and walk to my bus stop -- and wait at my bus stop! Fortunately, I'm on holiday for the next seven days, but that doesn't excuse me from having to walk the dog.

Although the snow starts to burn his paws after about 20 minutes, Remy still wants his daily walk. (We tried getting him some of those little dog booties, but he went berserk when we put them on, went tearing off into the woods at the dog park, and promptly lost two of them.) At least now that we are home all day, we can go while the sun is still shining and take advantage of the few extra degrees of warmth it provides. There's also something to be said for how, in these dark days of midwinter, that little bit of sunshine raises your spirits, even as the cold saps your strength. Invariably, after the walk, we all immediately collapse into a deep sleep, but even that is more pleasant when you have a colorful new German felt blanket -- a Christmas surprise from Kevin -- to curl up in.

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