Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Things I Probably Should Have Known About Blizzards

You know, before I moved to the Arctic and found myself in a blizzard.

(Guys, do not seriously depend on my advice for your survival. I'm not that smart. I got frostbite on my ear once because I didn't want to ruin my hair with a hat.)

wind chill of -58 
blowing winds of 50 gusting to 70km/h 
visibility at 0.2 km

1. Have a way to find out whether your office is closed. Because man it would suck if you fought your way through the stormy weather, getting frostbite on your ears because you didn't wear a hat, only to arrive at work and find out that it's closed and everyone is home, including your boss.

2. Don't take a shower. You only have a finite amount of running water, and you need to ration it.  If there's a blizzard and you've got the day off work, so do the municipal services folks. If you take a nice long bath and then run out of water in the middle of rinsing out your shampoo, tough luck.  You won't be getting more water until the blizzard's gone.

3. This also means don't do the dishes. Let the dishes pile up until after the storm when municipal services are available again.  Like you need an excuse not to do the dishes.

4. In fact, try to limit your overall water use.  This includes flushing the toilet and stuff.  Instead of drinking water, drink wine.  You're not working anyway, so what are you staying sober for? Save your water.

...unless you're sharing your water tank with a neighbour.  Then you can make it a game of "who can use up the most water before it runs out". Take your bath before your neighbour does. Fill all your pots with water.  I'm just kidding. That would be a jerk move.  

If you run out of water, remember there's a blizzard outside, blowing snow (aka water) at your house.

 view from my living room window, during a blizzard

5. Stock up on food, especially food that doesn't need to be cooked, just in case the power goes out and you're stuck in the house for days. I suggest potato chips.  Actually, you probably should have done this before the blizzard hit. Along with other essentials, I suppose like bottled water, candles, matches, first aid kit, and wine. And a wine bottle opener.

6. Have a stockpile of board games to pass the time.  Rob likes to play video games and I like to write electronic music on the computer, but if the power goes out, we've always got Carcassonne. Well, who are we kidding. We love playing board games regardless of whether the power's out.

7. If you go for a walk, don't get lost. This sounds like a weird thing to say, but blizzards are actually really beautiful and lots of folks in town like to go outside to enjoy it. But when you can't see much farther than ten feet away, it's pretty easy to suddenly have no idea where you are, even if you're in the middle of town, and town is only a few kilometres long. I got lost in a snow storm once. It was cold.

So basically, sit in your filth and play video games. It sounds tough, but you gotta do what you gotta do to survive.

"when the power runs out, we'll just hum..." -My Iron Lung

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Cambridge Bay coffeehouse

Last weekend, I helped out with a local coffeehouse fundraiser for the local youth basketball teams here in Cambridge Bay.  There was live music (provided by yours truly Scary Bear Soundtrack as well as another local band Muskox Rodea), lots of yummy baked goods, coffee, and most importantly, an opportunity for people in the community to hang out with friends and family in a lovely, family-friendly, non-alcoholic setting.

But of course, first we had to get there.

After a while, we've learned to give yourself an extra hour before heading out somewhere, just in case the weather is so cold, your car won't start and you need to boost your car.  Repeatedly. It was pretty cold yesterday, about -50 with the windchill, and there was so much wind and clouds there was virtually no visibility.  Just driving to the venue was a challenge - building up speed in order to ram through the snow drifts...This is the life of an Arctic musician, I guess.

The coffeehouse was very well-organized. The kids from the Wolverines basketball team were all there early, working hard at setting everything up.  The generosity of all the home bakers in the tow really showed too, as there were tables and tables of donated baked goods for sale.

Local photographer Denise LeBleu donated some of her artwork for a draw

There was a great turn out for the event.  At first, I was a bit nervous about using the community hall as a venue, because it's just so huge.   Playing to a big empty hall didn't seem like the best coffeehouse atmosphere.  But as it turned out, practically everyone in town came by to check it out.  It didn't take long for the place to be full, without an empty seat at the tables.  Like I said, I guess with the blizzard-y weather outside, people were glad to be able to have a cozy place to hang out inside.

I really enjoyed listening to the performances by Muskox Rodeo, another local band in town.  Singer B is a mom, and every once in a while she had to go off stage to nurse her baby. I thought it was pretty interesting, in a modern riot grrrl kind of way.

The event was open for the public to come up and play a few tunes after our set. It was great to hear folks pick up a guitar and join in.

There were also lots of babies. I love babies!  It may not sound very punk rock of me, but I love having babies and kids at my shows.

As the hosts of the event, we had a few sets, and we really enjoyed it. People were attentive and respectful.  It's been a while since we played to such a large crowd. These days, I've been spending my time writing electronic music on the computer, but the event reminded me that I still love performing live on stage.

the hard-working youth basketball team

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Trade Show Music Night

Cambridge Bay was hosting the annual Kitikmeot Trade Show this week, which means the entire town was bustling with energy as delegates from all over the region filled every hotel room / spare couch, rubbing elbows with each other at the banquets and presentations while trying to sell each other their business.  It took a bit of an adjustment to get used to all of the hectic activity.  Searching for parking spots? Having to watch out for pedestrians crossing the road?  Having to wait in line to get into places? WHAT IS THIS, TORONTO?

Most of the events were limited to trade show delegates only, but they did host a public event for the community on Wednesday night, bringing in musicians from all over Nunavut as entertainment.  It seemed like every single person in Cambridge Bay came out and crammed themselves into the Community Hall.  The room was so jam packed, people were sitting on the floor and standing in the doorway.
The Premier of Nunavut, Peter Taptuna

The first performers were the father-and-son duo Colin and Gustin Adjun from Kugluktuk, who switched back and forth on guitar and fiddle, playing an assortment of bluegrass, folk, and gospel tunes.  The audience adored them, and every song, different couples would run up in front of the stage to start dancing, kicking up a storm with their mukluks.  I've always admired the way people can just lose themselves in the music and dance freely without an ounce of self-consciousness. This town sure loves square dancing.

They were backed on bass by our own David Evalik, who I've had the pleasure of playing with at a previous jam session.  I'm always impressed by how easily some folks here can just pick up and instrument and jump in, going with the floor without any instructions or sheet music.

teaching baby to dance

The second performer was singer Kelly Fraser of Sanikiluaq. I rarely ever meet anyone from Sanikiluaq - you really should look at where it's located on a map. Kelly is known for her covers of popular songs that she sings in her native tongue Inuktitut, especially Rihanna's Diamonds. She told us stories about how her mother used to run the local radio station, which gave her exposure to all these old songs.  It was neat to hear Creedance Clearwater in Inuktitut - as well as Pink.

She was very sweet, and people gave her a warm reception, enjoying the songs that they were so familiar with, sung in a new language.   It was neat because most people in town don't speak Inuktitut - if anything, they speak Innuinaqtun.  But her songs about Inuk pride, and going outside in the cold winter and feeling alive, transcends language barriers and seemed to reach out to all of the Inuit folks in the room - especially when she did an cover of Psy's "Gangnam Style" - in Inuktitut.  The whole room bounced with her as she sang "Oppa's Innu style".

everyone loves Kelly

The children were infatuated with her.  They don't get to see live music nearly as often as kids do down south, so they all crowded around the front of the stage, singing along to all of the choruses. I realized something that night: there's something eerily unsettling about hearing a mob of small children chanting "TONIGHT. WE ARE YOUNG. LET US SET THE WORLD ON FIRE".  When grown men (Fun.) do it, it's epic.  When a mob of small children do

Headlining the show was Nelson Tagoona from Rankin Inlet. Nelson describes himself as a "throat boxer". His music is a unique combination of the Inuit style of throat singing and the hip hop technique of beat boxing.  Pretty clever. His performance was enthusiastic and his attitude was incredibly positive, hopefully a great example for all the children that were watching him transfixed, as though hypnotized.  They could not believe the sounds coming out of the guy's throat.  Nelson weaved stories from his life into his performances, stories that often became lessons about believing in yourself.  He switched fluidly from electric guitar to acoustic to just beat boxing, playing with his talk box and pedals  and various microphone effects with obvious ease.

Overall, it was an enjoyable night.  We don't get to have live music as often as in the south, so it was great to have a chance to listen to a wide variety of music from all over Nunavut.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Looking for love and dentistry on Valentine's Day

I wish I had a better story for how I knocked loose a tooth in my head. Like, I went sky-diving, or I  fell into a drunkard's fist whilst trying to stop a bar fight between three prosecutors. But the real story is, I was cheating on my diet by pigging out on a cinnamon bun, and it was so good that in my enthusiasm, I bit down on the fork.  Apparently, really hard. That's when I heard a weird crack, followed by the pain.  And then all of a sudden, my tooth was loose. Loose like when you were a small kid wiggling that first tooth so you can grab a buck off the Tooth Fairy. Except I'm an adult and this was a permanent tooth. I couldn't quite determine just how loose it was because touching it was excruciating.  But it was definitely looser than it was before I had sank my teeth into a fork.

That's what you get when you try to eat a fork.

Well, that was no good. No more cinnamon buns for the rest of the night.  no more eating anything actually, as though the Diet Gods were enacting their punishment on me for cheating my diet on a non-cheat day.

Do you also have those recurring nightmares about your teeth falling out? It seems to be common. What do these disturbing dreams mean, anyway? Now my nightmares were coming true.  All the was missing was the zombie apocalypse.

This was upsetting. It was exciting to lose your teeth as a kid, heck, you even felt productive, like you accomplished something, but now as an adult I did not want to have that kind of a smile.  My vanity was panicking. Have I mentioned that I had pretty much the most perfect set of teeth you can get without having to get braces?

I wasn't sure what do to, so I tried to get help on the Internet.  The Internet is not a very reliable place to get medical advice.  Usually the first search results you get is Yahoo Answers, which are full of useless answers from non-experts who have no business giving medical advice and will one day be sued for it.

The semi-reliable sites all said pretty much the same thing: "See a dentist immediately for an emergency evaluation."

Well, this was going to be a problem.

There is no dentist in Cambridge Bay. I'm pretty sure there is no dentist in the entire western half of Nunavut. Instead, a dentist comes to town several times a year. I actually heard there was one guy who is a musician by day, and a dentist on the side. He does a few dental trips to the north each year, and that funds his music career. Otherwise, the nearest dentist was in Yellowknife, a $1500 flight 800 kilometres away.  So, that was not going to happen.

Not knowing what else to do, I decided to drink a glass of milk.  But we had no milk. I stopped drinking milk a while ago because I got tired of the way the milk here sours quickly. Instead, I drink almond milk.  There was, I saw, Rob's coffee cream, but I couldn't stomach the idea of gulping down 18% cream (that costs $5 for 500mL, no less), so I tried watering it down.  Unfortunately, I forgot to use the filtered water and used tap water instead.  Warm tap water. I have complained before about the tap water.  So, my "milk" tasted disgusting.

But there was nothing else to do that night. So I went to bed, with fears that the tooth would come off in the middle of the night and I would swallow it in my sleep. I did not, however, and the next morning, my tooth was still there, wobbly as an anarchist.

In a moment of inspiration, I tried calling my dentist in Ottawa, the one that I have been seeing since I was a little girl with loose teeth.  It turned out his office was closed on Fridays. I should have been a dentist.  I tried calling the on-call phone number for dental emergencies, which connected me to a receptionist in an Ottawa dental office with terrible English.

Me: "Hi, I live in Nunavut and I don't have access to a dentist. I was wondering if I could speak to a dentist about my loose tooth?"

Receptionist: "You want to book appointment?"

Me: "No, I can't, I live in Nunavut. I just want to talk to a dentist..."

Receptionist: "So you want to book appointment with office?"


Receptionist: "With appointment? I book for you."


Receptionist: "Oh.  Then why would you want to book an appointment with the office?"

At that point I was so frustrated I was tempted to tell her to learn English or get out of my country, but there would be some irony there, with my own bullied childhood experiences.

Eventually she handed me over to a dentist who spoke only marginally better English.  When I explained my situation, he suggested I not eat anything until I saw a dentist. That wasn't going to happen. My next dental appointment, with my English-speaking dentist in Ottawa, was in August.

Eventually I gave up and walked over to the health station, which has no dentist, but does have nurses. I wasn't sure if they could do anything for me.  Was I going to need mouth splints? Could I get ones that look like really cool grills? The kind that rappers wear? With diamonds?

The nurse who met with me was a friendly woman with a Newfoundland accent. Pretty much every non-Inuit person here has one of those. You kind of just pick it up, even if you aren't from Newfoundland.  I explained to her my problem.

the health station
"Is your face swollen?" she asked me.
"No, actually," I replied. "It's just the tooth that is sore."
"The side of your face looks kind of swollen," she observed, looking at me.  "Looks kind of lopsided, like one side is swollen."
I was suddenly reminded of how I look when I run on the treadmill. My jowls.  One cheek flops up and down; the other one doesn't.  Great, maybe I not only have a root canal problem, but also Bell's palsy.
"No, it's not swollen," I finally said.  "I'm just ugly."

In the end, the nurse just told me to watch out for possible infections, and gave me a bottle of painkillers, which I was only supposed to take after eating food.   Which was going to be interesting, since the dentist told me not to eat food.

I couldn't eat food anyway. It was too painful to have anything touch my tooth.  Rob was supposed to cook me a Valentine's Day dinner, but now it seemed that eating solid food was a luxury I couldn't afford.  This fact was particularly difficult for me to bear. I am an emotional eater. I have a tendency to figuratively feed my feelings, to eat my emotions.  It's why I married a chef.  In my mind, I see food as love.  And now that I could not eat, I felt so lost.

"Can you at least drink fluids?" my mother asked in an email.

I replied:
We are discussing different ways to let me eat my Valentine's day pasta dinner.  One option is to puree it in a blender, like the way Rob used to for the toothless old people at the retirement home.

The other option is to have Rob chew the food for me, and then drop it in my mouth, like the way a mama bird feeds her baby birds.

Luckily, I could still drink beer.

On a whim, I decided to see if I could book an appointment with the dentist the next time he was in town. I called the number the health station had told me to call.  I got an answering machine that told me that the dentist would next be in on January 12. That was not helpful.  I eventually found out when the dentist was coming through the hotel where he was booked to stay.  His next visit would be March 24.  By then, my tooth was either going to be completely fine, or already too far gone.

Oh well. Hopefully it will heal. Until then, someone else is going to have to cut my steak for me...and possibly chew it for me too.

all I want for Valentine's Day is my two front teeth

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

water woes

Water has sometimes provided an interesting and unexpected challenge for us here in the North.

First of all, it's somewhat scarce, given the fact that we're sandwiched between a rock desert and the salty ocean. The ground is too frozen from permafrost to lay down water pipes, so our water is delivered to our house by truck, from the aptly named Water Lake.  They usually do a good job of providing water on a regular basis, but every once in a while our timing is off and the water runs out.

I've mentioned before the Northern experience of running out of water.  Once in a while, you'll wake up, wander over to the bathroom and realize that you're out of water.  Then you'll hear the low grumbling of the water truck's motor nearby, growing fainter and fainter as it pulls away, and you'll send your poor husband out of the house to run across the street in his pajamas in -40 degree weather to chase the water truck down and service your house. It's a good exercise, in terms of survival skills, but also, actual physical exercise.

When the water truck disappears around the corner, and you trudge back to your house feeling a little defeated, you'll then make calls to the hamlet office, leaving your address, hoping that they'll be able to find your place despite the fact that 1) your street has no street sign and 2) your house has no house numbers.

Eventually though, the water truck will come, as will the sewage truck driver.

and then sometimes this happens.

Besides being relatively scarce, there's also the quality of the water.  I'm not a particularly picky person when it comes to the taste of my water, so when we first moved here, we just drank from the tap. Then someone pointed out to me that most people drink filtered water here, because, well, "How often do you clean your water tank?" she asked. (Our answer is never, because it's located in a different unit.) "Also," she said, "you realize that we have no control over the cleanliness of the water up to the point it reaches our house?"

There's no denying that the water is...different. The best evidence of it is the slow death / early retirement of Herbie the Humidifier. I have no idea why, but I had decided to name the humidifier that pumps enough moisture in the air to keep our guitars happy. Herbie's been working hard for the last year, but lately he's been having a hard time catching up.  We re-fill it every day and clean it out every week, but I guess after all the hard water that we keep dumping into him, he's getting ready to give up, after working overtime too long.

For drinking water at home, we use a Brita filter.  Two of them, in fact, one connected to the kitchen sink tap and a Brita pitcher.  Despite the double filtering process, Herbie has still been struggling, and our kettle gets these little floaty bits in them. Needless to say, we have to change the filters more often than the box recommends.

The water in our office is generally too weird-tasting to drink straight.  We don't bother putting them through a filter, because we'll go through the filters way too fast. Usually I just bring bottled water from home. Sometimes, though, if I'm particularly thirsty or forgot to bring my bottled water, I have to drink the office water.  That gets to be more of a process.  I have to boil the water in the office kettle. Then I pour it into a mug.  Then I put the mug in the fridge for a few hours to cool it down.  By the time I've got my drinking water available, it's time to go home. So, I try to remember to pack my water bottle to work.  Hopefully a blizzard doesn't ever hit while we're at work, with no drinkable water...

Basically, we end up using the kettle a lot. Boiling water is the simplest safest way to go.  Like I said, though, if what you want is cold drinkable water, rather than hot boiling water, it becomes a bit of a process to cool it down. Luckily all of outside is one giant freezer.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

I knew you were trouble

We're going to be performing this song on Saturday at a coffeehouse fundraiser that we're helping out with to raise money for the local youth basketball teams:

Monday, February 10, 2014

My Letter to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

In 2011, I participated in the International Youth Internships Program managed by CIDA in partnership with the Canadian Bar Association to work in human rights law in Namibia. Since then, the program has been postponed and is now under review, where the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development must decide whether to continue funding the program. I wrote this letter in support of the program.

The Honourable John Baird, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Foreign Affairs
House of Commons, Ottawa, ON
K1A 0A6

Dear Minister Baird,

My name is Gloria and I live in Cambridge Bay, Nunavut.

From 2011 to 2012, as part of the International Youth Internships Program (IYIP) managed by the Canadian International Development Agency, I had the privilege to spend seven months in Windhoek, Namibia, working with the Legal Assistance Centre on a project focused on human rights. The Legal Assistance Centre is a non-profit organization that was originally founded to combat apartheid, and now continues to assist local Namibians with important legal human rights issues.

You see, in 2007 I went to law school so I could become a human rights lawyer. However, I found that it was difficult to gain experience in human rights law, as most of the opportunities were unpaid. Many law school graduates cannot afford to work for free, especially if they have student loans.

This is why I consider myself to be fortunate that the IYIP existed at the time. It was a rare and exciting opportunity to get experience as a human rights lawyer, while receiving financial support to help cover my basic day-to-day living expenses. While working with the Legal Assistance Centre as part of the IYIP in partnership with the Canadian Bar Association, I developed essential skills in human rights law while learning to adapt to life in a developing foreign country. It was a life-changing experience where I learned so much.

I am now working as a poverty lawyer in Nunavut, one of the few such lawyers resident in the entire territory. I assist my predominantly Inuit low-income clients with their legal rights, including in employment law, landlord-tenant disputes, and human rights complaints. I feel very fortunate to be working here.

I would like you to know that my employer has informed me that my experience in Africa under the IYIP was one of the reasons why they thought I was a suitable candidate for this position. They explained that my IYIP experience demonstrated my ability to adapt to and thrive in a cross-cultural context, often with limited resources. The experience that I have gained from the IYIP continues to directly help me with my job today, as my clients in Nunavut often deal with similar themes of poverty, addiction, domestic abuse, and isolation that I saw in Namibia – although in a very different environmental climate, of course.

Many of my colleagues who graduated law school with me are still struggling to find steady work.
We all know the story: in order to get a job, you need experience. But in order to get experience, you
need a job. The number of young lawyers that are out of work is particularly frustrating when
juxtaposed with the fact that there is a huge need for lawyers in remote areas such as Nunavut or
northern Ontario. But these vacant positions require some work experience in order to ensure that
clients’ needs are adequately and competently addressed.

I am very lucky that I have been able to achieve my dream of being a human rights lawyer, which
was made possible through my time with the IYIP. At the same time, I feel saddened that the next
generation of law school graduates may not have the same wonderful opportunities that I had with
the IYIP. My understanding is that your department needs to decide whether it will renew funding
for the International Youth Internship Programs. The IYIP offers exactly what new university
graduates need – paid experience. It prepares them for their future career and is an important
investment in the future of young Canadians.

As such, I am respectfully asking you to ensure the continuation of the IYIP, and to engage all
relevant stakeholders in a dialogue should you wish to review the program.


part of a report about domestic violence I helped work on while at the Legal Assistance Centre

Note: You can read about my experiences in Namibia here, or starting from the beginning here

Note: You can also read the letter written by my friend Joshua Lam, who is accomplishing wonderful public interest work in Alberta with Pro Bono Law Alberta and Calgary Housing & Employment Services.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

a walk in the snowstorm

The weather channel had been calling for a blizzard all day.  I was secretly excited. Down south, we see snowstorms as nuisances, inconveniences that turn our daily commute into harrowing experiences.  Here, there is no commute. Instead, a blizzard means the offices close and we get the day off work. It means a bunch of other things too, of course, such as a possible interruption in water and sewage delivery service, which would suck if you ran out of water or your sewage tank was full.  

But I was looking forward to a blizzard. I've been living here for over a year and we still haven't had a real blizzard yet.  As I've mentioned before, we don't actually get that many blizzards here.  It's usually too cold to snow.

Unfortunately, this was how it looked outside:

This does not look like a blizzard.  I was disappointed. Once again, the weatherman was wrong.

About three hours later, however, this was how it looked outside:

The weather changes quickly here.  Maybe the blizzard was happening after all.

But nope.  By evening the skies were clear again.  There was a lot of wind, but this so-called "blizzard" was mysteriously lacking in any snow.

that's not a blizzard!

The next morning was also fine. So much for the snow storm.  I went to work.

Once I was at the office, the weather turned again.

By the afternoon, we got the message that the weather had gotten bad enough for the government offices were closing down. Well, if the government offices were closing down, so were we! We had ourselves a proper storm day! Finally!

My first instinct, once I left the office, was to go for a walk. Yes, in the middle of the snowstorm. I love going for walks, but with so few hours of daylight, I don't really get the chance these days. I figured I could take advantage of the fact that I wasn't working during today's daylight hours, and check out the snowstorm first hand.

So I went for a walk along the beach shoreline.

The winds were gusting up to 60 km/h, but it wasn't actually that cold - only about -40 or so with the windchill. What was neat to see was the way that the gusts of wind blowing snow across the streets was creating very limited visibility. You couldn't see very far at all.

Still, it was a lovely sight,  feeling the wind blow by your body, watching it trace lines of snow across the road like an intricate design. Not that my photos could really show anything.

And then all of a sudden a large animal ran at me out of nowhere.

You know the only thing I could think, when it jumped on me, was Maybe I should start carrying a gun.

"Down!" I heard a woman shout.

It turned out that it was my friend D, walking her two large and adventurous dogs.   She must have been the only other person in town who thought that the snowstorm was the perfect time to go for a leisurely stroll.
We walked together.

We talked about how the conditions can turn in a second and you can suddenly have no visibility - all of a sudden, you may not be able to see past your hand in front of your face.  It's very easy to get lost in these conditions.  She told me a story about two men who meant to go for a short snowmobile ride across the bay but ended up getting lost and eventually froze.  The weather websites usually advise you to tie a rope line to a tree or something in order to be able to find your way around, but there are no trees here in the North.

Soon enough, as we approached the tundra, the winds were getting so harsh I found I could barely open my eyes. Curse my Asian eyes, unprotected due to a lack of a protruding brow or proper eyelashes.  Also, if I closed my eyes too long, my eyelashes would freeze together.  I was starting to feel some sharp sensations on what little exposed skin that I had, mainly in the upper part of my cheeks below my eyes.  I found myself wishing that I had brought snow goggles, like the kind made out of bone that Atanarjuat the Fast Runner wears in the movie.

So I left D and her dogs to head back towards the heart of town.  Wherever that was.  With such little visibility, it was hard to see exactly where I was heading. I was in the middle of a residential street, with houses all around me, and yet it was too easy to lose my bearings, because you just couldn't see past the next house. It was pretty crazy to think that I was having a hard time recognizing where I was, in a small town with a four kilometre radius.

On top of all that, bizarrely enough, I was sweating like crazy. I was wearing many layers of clothes, plus my Canada Goose parka and my Baffin boots which can withstand temperatures of -100 degrees. Like I mentioned, it wasn't that cold, so I was almost over-dressed.  I needed to get indoors and shed some layers.

Eventually I found the gym, and decided to go for a workout.  There was a surprising lot of people working out there too. I guess that's what people like to do with their blizzard day off. Then I spent the evening indoors, safe and warm from the fierce blowing winds.