We just realized that winter is real in Canada. It’s a typical Wednesday morning. Fritz drives the kids to the school around 7:40 in the morning. Then we had breakfast as he gets back home. The kids took their breakfast at the school since they have free breakfast at school. We ride with Fritz as he goes to his work then drop us at the dance studio where Sunshine has her ballet class. After the class we planned to go to the library to pick up some books for Blithe’s daily reading.
The difference of today from other Wednesday morning is the cold temperature outside and the very strong wind. It snowed yesterday afternoon until evening and the snow haven’t melted yet because of the below freezing point temperature.
After Sunshine’s ballet class we walked going to the bus stop. It’s so slippery. The pathway is not cleared yet. I’d experienced winter before but this is my first time walking on ice. We are still halfway on our 180 meter walk but Sunshine is about to cry already. She was looking for a pocket where she can hide her hands but her one-piece snowsuit doesn’t have one. I put on her gloves but it keeps on falling off in her hands. I don’t want to stop to put on the gloves again because I can’t afford to miss the bus again. We just missed the bus #71. If we missed the bus # 62 that will be coming anytime it will worsen our dilemma.
At last we arrived at the bus stop before the bus arrives. But the wind blows stronger. Sunshine is crying already. I hugged her to keep her warm but to no avail. She even asked me pointing to the house nearby, “pasok tayu sa house” (let’s go inside the house). The 5 minute wait feels like forever.
It feels a lot better when the bus arrives. As we got off the bus at the Plaza Boulevard bus terminal we were warned by a woman that it’s slippery. The frozen ice was not yet cleared. We transferred to bus 50 going to the CF Champlain mall bus terminal and then transferred to bus 52 going to the Main Street. It’s a lot better at the mall bus terminal because it was cleared and salted. As we got off at the Main Street we are still extra careful in walking down to the library because ice is everywhere.
We arrive at the library safe and sound. It’s cozy and warm inside. Sunshine played the Lego while I look for books I will borrow. We only stayed for an hour because we need to pick up Iya at school. While at the library I browsed at the possible routes/bus we will take, if we will go directly to the school or go home first and get Sunshine’s stroller. But then I decided to go to the school directly so I don’t need to walk for another 700 meters. If we will go straight to the school we only need to walk for 300 meters from the bus stop.
As we got out from the bus near the school, I know I made the right choice of going straight to the school. It would be very difficult for me to push the stroller with the ice on the pathway. I discovered that walking outside the pathway, on the grass is safer.
It’s still early when we arrived at the school and the wind blows so strong. We decided to go inside the first door at the school entrance and keep ourselves warm. We can’t withstand the wind and cold outside. It’s only -10C but the real feel is -24C. Some of the parents that arrived early also followed us.
It’s time to go home. The real ordeal now began. Our normal 13 minute walk from school to home now became a 30 minute walk. Same as going to school we walked in the grass but on some areas we need to walk on the icy pathway/driveway. Sunshine fell several times, good thing I hold her hand and Iya once. We need to be careful step by step so we won’t fall. I want to carry Sunshine because to pacify her because she keeps on complaining but it will be dangerous for us. I might be out of balance if I carry her. There are even some instances that I feel blown away by the wind gust by few steps. The wind gust is around 80- 100 km/h.
I’m not whining now the winter in Canada. I’m not sure if it’s officially winter already since it’s still November. I’m already aware of it before we came here. But I just realize that I underestimated it. People said that it’s just the beginning. There will be many colder days coming than today. The temperature may drop as low as -30C with the wind chill.
If we need to go out by ourselves with the cold weather outside we need to be prepared. We need to bundle up. The bottom point is invest on warm winter gears like coat, gloves and boots. What the kids and I can’t stand off is our freezing hands. My cheap gloves can’t stand the freezing temperature. I realized that Fritz made the right choice on investing on warm gloves. But on the other hand, I made a good choice with my boots. It’s not the fashionable boots but it fits with the weather and has a good grip with the slippery pathway.
Above all enjoy and appreciate the weather. Whining will not make our life easier. Not all people experience this.