Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Freezing Fingers in a Biting Chill

By: Madhur Prashant, Humber Student & International Centre Student Ambassador

Toronto has lately experienced a variety of weather conditions.

Thundering heavy clouds darkened its skies as the city soaked within a day a month-full of downpour. Equally raging was summer that saw it steaming and sweating wrapped in a hot blanket. Such weather conditions are, according to locals, rare here.

Despite the deluge and heat wave, and with due respect to winters, I did not once long to live a winter day. Having experienced winters more than once, I can safely call them ruthless, and not just cold. And since I am in the midst of a recurring heat wave and cool showers, I can safely talk about my winter experience.

Weather here changes more frequently than my moods and I am not sure if it will still be warm by the time I finish writing this!

Let’s cool down!

You know, it’s the kind of cold that silences even the birds . Every exposed part of our body freezes and eventually stops reacting anymore to any further fall in temperature. The entire face with its gleaming smile, sparkling eyes and chattering mouth, stiffens and refuses to gleam, sparkle and move.

People appear weightier in their winter gear- with many layers of clothes, heavy long jackets, fur coats and hats, thick gloves, and bulky boots.

Fresh, white snow takes shape of the things it falls upon. White rooftops, white roads, white trees and white everything, the world suddenly becomes brighter, if not colourful!

Frozen Fingers

How is winter ruthless? Here’s how…

Many of us are stuck to our electronic devices, like flies on sugar, when walking on road or when dining on a date during warmer days. This scene changes drastically during winters. Our use of electronic devices reduces significantly when outdoors. Reasons can be many.

- Touch screen phones respond to stylus, which comes with a few phones, and to our fingers in the case of others. Screens usually do not recognize the touch of woolen-covered fingers. And, it is a terrible idea to text with exposed fingers, even if for a few seconds. Not only will those (fingers) freeze and hurt to the point of being numb; your text will end up speaking Greek and Latin!

- Many electronic devices require utmost focus which, during this time, is needed more for balancing oneself on icy road, and navigating through howling winds and flurries

- Seeing through fur/woolens covering half your face is not easy and so, devices remain generally inside.

I remember, one Fall I was walking home biting into tiny brownies when the chill froze my greedy, bare fingers and stopped me from eating anymore. My fingers turned stiff and refused to move, lift and hold. I was forced to wait until I reached home to finally get back to eating. That day I rebelled and finished six soft and creamy brownies!

New and potential students, please note. This is not meant to scare you into changing your plans. Winters can be troublesome only when they do not get the required respect. If you are layered adequately and prepared as winter sets in, there is less to fear! Everything, including local public transport, offices, schools and shops are well-heated. You might even end up sweating in your winter gear!

You must research on ways and tricks to befriend winters. It is altogether a different season, and one can never get used to it. But, we can learn to create laughter, color and warmth around us even in severe, biting cold.

By Madhur Prashant

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