The Weather.

It’s really cold! I’m not making it up this time! The BBC corroborates my story! Two days ago it was, “Cold Weather Kills Dozens in Eastern Europe,” while today it’s “Europe’s Freeze Claims 110 Lives.”

Actually, while it has been colder than normal, it wasn’t THAT much colder than normal two days ago when I first read about a cold front coming through Eastern Europe and the Balkans. “That proves it,” I thought. “Slovenia really isn’t part of Eastern Europe OR the Balkans. I don’t feel particularly cold, no blizzards here. Just like they’ve always been claiming, Slovenia’s gotta qualify as Central.”

Yesterday was fairly of cold, though. Despite reading the newspaper headlines, I was a bit surprised. I left the house to go to school, and it was -4 C, that’s about 25 F, and the high for the day was something like 28. But the wind. The wind was something awful. Brrr.

Today I was prepared for it, though. I wore my long johns beneath my jeans, a turtle neck, my thickest Aunt Betsey Icelandic wool sweater, wool socks, Kat-knitted hat and gloves, all topped by my Columbia Sportswear high-tech long down jacket. All to walk a block to the library.

I had been planning on going for run this morning before I hit the books, but I made the mistake of finishing a great book I’ve been reading, “Annapurna.”  It’s an autobiographical account of the first expedition to summit the Himalayan mountain Annapurna in 1950. At the time of this expedition, Annapurna was the highest mountain in the world to ever be climbed, and to this day it’s the most deadly. I’d really recommend the book. It’s short, and wildly engaging. However, it does make one’s feet feel a little chilled. I just couldn’t face the thought of going on a run in the cold after being transported to a land of blizzards, avalanches, and frostbite all morning. My psychological grit for the day had all been used up.

Now, though, looking ahead at the weather forecast, I wish I had pushed through it. If I didn’t care to run this morning, I don’t think I’ll be too eager for the next few days. The famous cold snap that I’ve been reading about will have worked its way over to my section of the world. Tomorrow’s high: -4C. Tomorrow’s low: -6. Just wait, by Sunday it’s supposed to be a high/low of -8/-15C. -8? How can a high be…-8?!

On the upside, though, it is supposed to finally properly snow at long last this weekend. This is great news, because I’ll get a chance to break out my super snow boots that I both purchased and dragged all the way across the ocean exclusively for my first real “winter.” Also, I’ll hopefully take lots of snowy photos of Ljubljana and have an excuse to drink hot cocoa. Another up is that at least I’m not in Lithuania, studying their transition to democracy. The high in their capital this morning was -30C.

So, when’s spring again?

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Cold

It is so cold. Today we had a high of 38 F, and a low of 27 F. I bought a hot water bottle. I love my hot water bottle. It now ranks on my Favorite Things I Own list, along with my long poofy down coat, sharp knife, and my fantastic nonstick skillet. The true necessities of life.

Ok, so I guess freezing really isn’t THAT cold. Why, I have heard stories of the Midwest, and goodness knows that this is nothing in comparison to Russia or something. But for me, native Portlander whose idea of “freezing cold” begins and ends at exactly freezing, (32F) and who has spent the last three years among the Palm Trees of Southern California, I find this chilly.

In fact, I actually find it endlessly fascinating. I am absolutely intrigued how it never seems to warm up. Day after day, it only seems to get colder. (In Portland, we have cold snaps, but they do last about the length of a snap.)

Just saw that we’re supposed to have a forcasted low of 23 F coming up this week. Brrrrr.