Thursday, February 21, 2008

On winter...

I came into work this morning and it was as we used to say in the Navy: "Colder than the heart of a Belgian whore!" Winter in Canada and it's associated weather, is always a great source of conversation, as well as new and creative epithets to describe it. I have observed over the years that for the most part, we as Canadians have a love/hate relationship with winter. We delight in bitching about the cold, the snow and all the inconveniences associated with it. Let a non-Canadian enter the room and we'll soon be deluging him with stories and factoids of how winter makes us Canadians the hardy breed we are. It's pretty funny when you think of it.

There is something warming though, about wandering into a Tim Horton's when the air outside is so cold, it feels like a physical insult to your body and lungs. You order your double-double while nodding pleasantly to others in line, acknowledging one another for being out and braving the cold. It's never long before someone will comment on the weather and before you know it, you're engaged in conversation with folks you've never met. The weather can be a great excuse for meeting new people.

I can remember some years ago when I was still in Nova Scotia, going fishing on the first day of spring with my best friend Spider. It was snowing and blowing a gale, but it was our tradition to go toss a line into Graham's Grove on the first day of spring. Needless to say, we didn't get a bite. We soon packed it in and went for a coffee down to Timmie's on Ochterloney Street. As we walked in and stood in line waiting to be served, one of the locals came in and announced: "Well Lord wouldn't believe the sight I just saw... These two fools were after fishin' out in Graham's Grove, just standin' there in the middle of a Jeezus storm... I jus' 'ad to shook me 'ead!"

Before I could say anything, Spider raised his hand and announced with some degree of pride: "Uh... That would have been us!"

I miss those days...

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