Monday 26 January 2015

Five Ways to Survive the Canadian Winter

If you live in Canada, as I do, you’ve probably had enough of winter by now. It’s been cold up here for what feels like forever. I know that’s a long time and perhaps a bit of an exaggeration, but still…

We’re not known as, ‘Crazy Canuks,” for no good reason though. Some people really are. They embrace the cold, laugh in the face of the windshield, and squeeze the life out of winter. Good for them, I say.

Image via

Then, there are those like me.

I’m Canadian through and through. When I travel abroad, I carry a knapsack with the Canadian flag sewn onto it. I wear a baseball cap clearly displaying the red and white. I'm a proud Canadian, darn it! I love bacon, maple syrup, Dan Aykroyd, and I really, really love having two languages to choose from when I call my Federal Government, which of course, I never do, because the wait is too long, and I can't leave the gravy for the poutine on it's own for too long. But, if I were to call my Federal Government, oui, I have options. Or as the French say, les options. This makes me happy.

Anyway, you get the picture. I AM Canadian! Except when it come to winter. Then, I am a wooze, (that’s Canadian for "weak in spirit and even weaker in physical activity").

I'm not alone. There are thousands like me strewn across this great nation. We're a hush-hush group. We don't talk about it openly. To admit that you hate winter and more so, despise the folks who buy ski-hill passes (and wear them hanging from their ski-jacket zippers all winter long), is sacrilegious. We suffer in silence. Grin and bear it.

So, what to do if winter outdoor activities aren’t your thing? How exactly do you survive the long, dark nights of the cold winter months? Here are my favourite five ways.


Top Five Ways To Surviving the Canadian Winter: 

5. Talk About the Weather.

Talking about the weather is actually a Canadian pastime. Say things like:

“It’s nostril-sticking weather all right,” as goo drips from your nose like icicles on a chain-link fence.

“Jeez, it’s cold out there,” like the person donning the ear muffs and parka missed this part of the day.

“Cold enough for ya?” as if -40 celcius isn’t!

Canadians wear cold like a badge of honour. So talk about it. 

With anyone.

4. Surf the Internet and Find Your Place in the Sun

Find your chair

If you can’t afford to actually go anywhere, hit the internet anyway. Pull up a photo your favourite warm locale and make it your screensaver. When a blizzard threatens to whip snow around your head, like candy floss at the fall fair, and you’re told to stay off the roads, stare at your screensaver until you actually believe yourself to be there. For greater effect, add a heat lamp. You'll feel all warm, and toasty and it will cost you way less than the actual cost of a Caribbean vacation.

3. Go Away

Stocking up on vitamin D

Tell your friends you’re, “going south,” for the weekend, even if it's from Barrie to Toronto. Just saying, "I'm going south," will make your friends envious and they'll say things like, "Wow. That's amazing. I'm staying home and re-arranging my sock drawer." You'll grin and walk away fast. Then, return to work on Monday with a red glow (after spending hours under the heat lamp you bought to accomplish #4). No one will know and your friends will be totally impressed.

2. Eat

Bacon wrapped chicken and bacon chocolate. See a trend?

Wanting to look cool and slender in the summer, we merely pretend to eat. Don’t waste the winter. Eat your way through it. Elasticize pants have a role. Winter is it.

1. Roast Something on the Kitchen Table 

It doesn't matter what it is. Just light it up. We chose Portuguese linguiรงa, because, well, I just happen to have some around. Plus, it has lots of fat and the grease drippings keep the fire going longer (just a suggestion). Having a fire-fighter in the house (which we happen to have acquired), is recommended to ensure, "safety first."

With at least two months of winter remaining, fantasies abound on just how to survive the remainder. 

Rest assured though, we will. We also do. 

"Hot enough for you?"

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