Wednesday, January 14, 2015

How Cold?

This is the moment, from inside the house where it is warm, that I anticipate on the mornings when I don't have to get up and go to work at the newspaper.
As I stand on my yoga mat stretching my muscles and circulating the blood around my body, waking up the brain for a day of writing, I watch for the change in light, the indication that my welcoming prayer is going to work on this frigid, frozen day.
It's this moment when the sun crests the trees on the other side of the river and reaches its long, warm tentacles across the road to peer into our yard.
This moment lasts about ten minutes, this moment of warm orange light, before the sun rises above all the trees and turns yellow, glaring and demanding.
"Enough with the Sun Salutations. I'm here. Time to get moving, get going. Start your day already."
So it's my cue to settle in at the dining room table with a cup of coffee and the newspaper.

Meanwhile, around me, the usual debate rages.

How cold is it?
Apparently, minus 29 isn't cold enough.
"What's the real temperature?" my mother always asks.
She means in Fahrenheit. I've stopped arguing with her that there is no difference between Celsius and Fahrenheit, or miles and kilometres, but it seems these pre-metric people insist on converting. But it's bizarre: She converts to miles because it sounds shorter and she converts to Fahrenheit because it sounds colder.
I think minus 29 sounds plenty cold enough to me.
The digital temperature gauge does underscore another truth: That if you don't know what the temperature is, you don't know how cold it is. Let the sunshine fool you -- it's a lovely day for a walk in the woods.
Around noon, that is.

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