I am not fond of winter, which can last 5 to 6 months in Canada, so why do I live here? It is my home and I love Canada.
I have two reasons for my dislike of winter. I grew up in the centre of Niagara Peninsula. It is nestled between Lake Erie and Lake Ontario. The lake bodies keep the temperature moderate. Niagara does have winter but the ground isn’t hidden by a blanket of snow for 5 to 6 months. Snow storms come then the weather gets mild and snow melts back to green grass.
The end of January, my birthday, is when the January thaw typically happens. One year my parents planned a skating birthday party for me. Dad spent time making a rink on our farm. The day before my party the weather warmed up and melted the rink. My party became an indoor party. I wasn’t very disappointed as I am not fond of skating, but it would have been fun.
The second reason; we jokingly would ask my Dad why he choose not to move to British Guiana. My ancestor, Dad’s great-uncle owned a sugar plantation there. When Dad was a teen his uncle asked him to come run the plantation. He declined the offer. It was for the best as he preferred to run his farm without hired help. Perhaps I was meant to grow up in a warm climate without winter, preferably near an ocean.
Do you ever wonder how your life would have turned out if your ancestors made different choices? Would I have been British or German if my ancestors didn’t immigrate to Canada?
Despite that I grew up in the milder area of Niagara, I’ve only spent 1/3 of my life there. After college my husband and I moved north where snow blanketed the earth from November to early April and the temperatures could dip to -30 to -40. Celsius or Fahrenheit, -40 is the same in both.
It is March and I am patiently waiting for the weather to warm up and melt the snow. I miss my flowers and the smell of grass, but mostly I miss the ability to walk around my yard.
To pass the winter we downhill ski or snowshoe through the bush behind our house, snowshoe not ski. I haven’t skied in 4 years. Covid put a stop to it. This winter the hills were opened without restrictions, but the weather was mild, and it often rained in January and February, global warming?. I could have gone skiing with my family last week, but I came down with a cold and didn’t have the energy to join them.
Our snowshoe trail is through the woods to snowmobile trails, across a marsh and up a trail that is getting grown over with trees, to the road then back home. Twice this winter, I only ventured halfway, to the snowmobile trails and-then came home. I wasn’t comfortable traversing the marsh. The mild weather might not have frozen the water under the snow. I have snowshoed into the water, it is not pleasant. At Christmas, we had a major snowstorm with felled trees across the path. One year I zigzagged around trees and lost my trail and almost couldn’t find my way home. I was only five minutes from the house but the woods blocked my view of it. I am not fond of getting lost. We don’t own the woods but have permission to snowshoe through it. It is a hunt-camp therefore I don’t go into the woods except to snowshoe.
This year I haven’t been outside as much as I should have, it was very cloudy too. I need the sun to soak up vitamin D or I get a mild case of SAD Seasonal Affective Disorder. When I become down I don’t want to go outside, which I need to do. It is a Catch-22.
While I wait for spring to come I have decided that walks down the road are what I need. Spring will come, it always does, often not until the end of March. My flowers will bloom, starting with crocus, the grass will grow green, and the rivers will warm up for swimming. and the cycle of the season will march on. Being discouraged about winter will change nothing, except my mood. It is a waste of my energy.
I should pop to the store and buy my vegetable seeds for the garden. I don’t plant them until May, but it is a spring lift-up.
I am definitely a summer person. What season is your favourite?
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