A “locational hazard” of living in Canada, winter will inevitably wreak its frosty havoc on our lives. As much as I try to deny the fact that winter is right around the corner, I can see it out of the corner of my eye, lurking in the seasonal shadows like a ghoul. Already the skies are darkening before I eat dinner, and though that isn’t saying much given my propensity for late night dining, its a sign of what is to come.
Perhaps dwelling on the looming abominable snowman of winter is not giving full recognition to the fall season. Though today the skies have opened their gray curtains to pour cold drops down onto my head as I dash from one place to the next, fall has redeeming qualities in spades. The overall feeling of crispness and new beginnings surround me this fall in particular, and the changing leaves echo my feelings of the need to move on from the past. As my ode to winter squash proves, the bounty of fall also lies in seasonal eating. How lovely to curl up with a book and a pumpkin spice latte, to indulge the senses. Certainly, despite the chill that sometimes overcomes me even in these early fall months, there is something to be said in defense of fall.
I’ve held contempt for winter throughout my seasons, perhaps because I’ve felt chained to its bleak and lengthy existence. But in all honesty, given the choice, I’ll likely live in a country with sharply different seasons my whole life. Would I appreciate a warm summer breeze as much if I hadn’t trekked through drifts taller than me in February or witnessed the forming of icicles on my eyelashes? No, and I’ve discovered many useful things through experiences such as these, including the magic of waterproof mascara and the fact that Ugg boots were made in Australia for a reason.
Christmas wouldn’t feel the same without the majesty of sparkling banks of snow glistening outside the window in the morning. And the solidarity in stories of being stuck in your car on the steepest hill in the city making the valiant effort to make it to a meeting despite a major snowstorm is irreplaceable. Especially if, once you’ve successfully navigated through white-out conditions, the meeting was canceled. There’s nothing quite like the weather to bring total strangers together, if only to engage in weatherman hating chatter at the airport waiting for an unexpectedly delayed flight.
So while I sit in my living room, heat turned up in early October and rue the day my ancestors decided that Canada was a great place to settle, winters be damned, I’m trying to think positively. Maybe one day I’ll own my Canadian-ness and embrace the winter with open arms. For now, I’m a winter skeptic with bony shoulders trying to stay warm.