Calgary: First Snowfall

“Snow” by Gauguin


Last night was the first snowfall since I moved to Calgary.  I hadn’t noticed until a friend called and told me it was snowing around 10:30 pm.  I watched it from my window from a long time- studying it.  The snowfalls here that I have experienced are not like the ones in Vancouver that are quiet and where the snow falls in a straight line.

The snow here undulates in the wind like a dancer’s belly.

“Dancing Girl” by Ken Meyer

So after a restless time in bed trying to sleep, I got up at 1 am, put on my snow gear and went out walking in the magnificence of it.  The streets were silent and I was the first one to walk out on this glittering blanket that instantly made everything beautiful under the streetlights.  It was exhilirating and magical; I felt like a kid again.  By the time I got home, I was ready for bed.  And I am learning all sorts of things about living in this climate:

*The temperature swings like crazy here so wearing layers that you can strip off while inside in the insanely hot buildings and put on before going out are essential.

*Looking at the weather network so you know what you need for the day and how to move around the city is important.  When it snows, things are often delayed.  Crowchild Trail (a highway) was super backed up this morning.

*Monkey see, monkey do.  I can tell by observing the locals that I will need to buy a good parka!  My Vancouver fleece will not cut it in 4o below.  So far, it’s only been 9 below.  Christina: the boots you gave me are great!  Thanks.

*Move FAR away from a bus after you get off to avoid snow spray!

So life in Alberta is a continuous adventure.  I am enjoying the people- who are, in many ways, like the weather: unpredictable, direct, helpful and forgiving.  Unlike Edmonton, Calgary has chinooks which are warm fronts that move through regularly and clear out all the snow.  Edmonton stays pretty much at below freezing temperatures the whole winter, so I am told. Did I say it was DRY?!  Wow.  I don’t get nose bleeds too often but I did have some blood in my nose the first week out here.  Will post “after” pictures of my apartment later in the week.  Hope you are all well!

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Terra
    Nov 16, 2010 @ 16:39:31

    Glad you enjoyed the snow. I listened to it all night and was first out with my shovel early this am. Majickal! Who needs a gym for a workout!


  2. Ann Dickie
    Nov 16, 2010 @ 19:36:58

    I love Gauguin’s Snow. A painting I can get right into and feel the calm, peaceful atmosphere when it snows. I’m so glad you are enjoying it. See how you feel when its snowing next June! I don’t much like the snow we often get here, its wet and soggy stuff.


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