Monday, February 11, 2013

A little more today.

As another cold snap threatens St. Petersburg, I find myself overcome with words which need to get out. Thank CHRIST!!!!! The 10 month writer's block of Ireland was almost too much to handle. This sudden burst of creativity and productivity is like being able to breath again. I have missed it so much.

But back to the weather. I think I may have finally found a place cold enough to suit me. Of course, when I explain to the St. Petersburgians that I moved here for the winters, they all stop, look at me as if I am completely insane, and then tell me with no uncertainty I am. And in many ways they aren't wrong.

This is the coldest place I have ever been. There are moments when the icy temperatures feels like a knife cutting away at you, so sharp and swift it makes your skin ache, and part of you is a little afraid you may never be warm again. It hurts to breath outside for the first few steps beyond your front door and feels like snow is filling your lungs. Getting dressed is a production requiring a director, producer, stage hands and a prop master. The amount of time it takes to put on that many layers makes it almost not worth the effort, almost.

Part of the problem with the 18 hours of dressing it takes to brave the elements outside is the fact every single building, store, metro station, apartment, and bus effectively tries to make one forget about the subarctic degrees outside by attempting to recreate the Sahara inside. Honestly. So instead of keeping the temperature a nice lovely 15/16 degrees, the heat is cranked up to at least 30 and we are left to fend for ourselves in the sweltering heat of indoors. I don't think I would mind so much if I could control the temperature inside my own apartment. However, in the older parts of the city entire buildings are controlled by one main thermostat. This means to get my flat to feel normal and not like some Turkish Bath I have to open every window, which I find odd when I know it is -15 outside and I see the snow cascading down. 

However, do to these extremes in temperature I have begun to find 0 to 2 degrees lovely and temperate. This new found acclamation allows me to occasionally make up for the epicness of my usual attire by rolling up my jeans, throwing on a hoodie and slipping in to my Chucks. Though I still feel a bit of the sting of winter, I find it less annoying than having to lace up boots or look at coats I am already sick of, or to wish I hadn't taken the time to suit up in first place the moment I step in doors. Plus it allows me to be even more of an oddity than just wandering around with my joyful smile and eager laugh. That has to be a plus, right?

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