Bloody Cold Out!

again today in Katzville. Needed a hot chocolate when we came in after groceries. Since getting in and out of baths has become a life-and-death situation at 70, the old method from childhood of a hot bath no longer takes off the chill. We use an electric blanket in the family room which warms you up fairly fast. Nothing like that chill that lingers otherwise. Even turning up the heat only works so far and doesn’t heat your inner core when you get a chill. Yeah, an electric blanket is what I’d swear by, especially for a cold lower body.

When you’re young, I think you’ve got more resistance; I can remember playing hockey or skating in sub-minus 20 F temps. But sooner or later you’d just want to get home asap. In our old WW1 house, we originally had a chain ‘thermostat’ furnace. You had to be careful pulling it to start, and there were times when it didn’t start or we were out of coal. I can remember us freezing on arctic days, waiting for a coal delivery just to get heat in the house. The relief of hearing the coal roll down the shute.

I delivered newspapers after school for 5 years (grade 5-9) and these kinds of winter days were common in ’60s Winnipeg. Plus you’d have to collect every week, having to go out evenings to basically get paid. Standing around outside waiting for the Saturday papers to come necessitated waits in the grocery store nearby just to get out of the cold. After that, you’d generate your own heat when your legs started moving to deliver two streets of papers. No wonder there was always a high turnover of carriers!

Well, there you go–poverty and trying to make some spending spare change when you received no allowance like many kids in my working-class neighborhood. And, at the end of the deliveries, rushing home to then sit in front of the big wall vent waiting for the blessed heat to come on again. Something I didn’t miss when we sold our house in grade 9 and moved into a nice warm apartment block. It was far saner and more civilized with less of the old inconveniences in the frozen North.

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