Wednesday, January 29, 2014

pictures of snow

"IT'S SO COLD," my friends in Toronto told me. "It's feels like -18 degrees. It's this polar vortex. Thanks, Gloria, thanks," they say, with the same tone of voice that the Europeans used when thanking Iceland for spewing Eyjafjallaj√∂kul's volcanic ash all over the rest of Europe in 2010.  "MINUS EIGHTEEN," they repeated.

It was only -28 degrees here in Cambridge Bay that day. Compared to the -60 windchills we'd been dealing with earlier that week, today felt relatively pleasant with no wind, and I took even took a midday walk on the frozen ocean across the bay.

And then, in the evening, it began to snow.

It was finally warm enough to snow. It doesn't actually snow that much in this region, which comes as a surprise to a lot of people.  Technically this area is rock desert, with less annual precipitation than a lot of Canadian cities.  It also means, sadly, that we don't get a lot of blizzards. No blizzards mean no blizzard days - no days off work to go play in the snow.

Nevertheless, when it does snow, it's kind of fun to stand outside and watch it.  For a few minutes. Then you go back inside, because it's cold.

Come on, blizzard blizzard blizzard

When it's snowing like this, it's fun to play with the flash on my camera and capture all the snowflakes whipping through the air.