Written by Matthew Cheung
You wake up and it’s cold, your alarm clock blares like a siren, cheerfully letting you know that class begins in 15 minutes. With a groan you halfheartedly pull the blanket off your frigid body and stumble your way to the bathroom. On the way, you happen to shamble past a window and casually, you take a look outside.
Strange…. to your poor, confused, sleep addled brain, it looks as though someone had left a white Instagram filter over your window. It takes a moment before you realize that what you’re seeing is snow, snow covering the ground, the trees and the people outside. As you stare outside, a pile of snow slides off the roof of a nearby house, straight on top of an unlucky passerby.
You walk back to your room and crawl back into bed. You’ll need 5 more minutes.
Welcome to your first Canadian winter.
To those of you (like me) who are new to Canada, your first Canadian winter can be a bit of a struggle. Especially if you (again like me) come from a place which is sunny and warm every day of the year.
So, to help us along, I asked around and prepared 5 key Canadian tips on lasting through the winter.
Tip #1: Gloves are key.
My first winter left my hands in terrible shape, the cold would often cut and crack skin around the knuckles. A nice, thick pair of gloves are essential, especially if you feel the urge to touch and play with snow!
Protip: If you text a lot, get a pair of gloves that are compatible with your smartphone screen.
Tip# 2: The Devil may wear Prada, but you wear Boots.
When stomping your way through the snowed out pavements, you need the right shoes to match the job. Boots not only help keep your feet dry, but they have good traction, stopping you from sliding and falling all over the place!
Protip: For those of you doing a Co-op, leave your dress shoes/heels at your office and simply change into them each morning.
Tip# 3: Schools out! Check online.
Occasionally the snow gets so bad that Dalhousie would declare a snow day, letting everyone crawl back into bed to catch up on Netflix. Don’t be one of those people who turn up to a cancelled class! Before you leave the house, check mydal to make sure that it’s not a snow day.
Tip #4: A chocolate a day keeps the frostbite away.
This one is simple. If you’re feeling cold, drink something hot!
Protip: Ask for whipped cream.
Tip #5: Turn down the heat
For those not living in residence, winter can be an expensive time where utilities are concerned. Where possible, turn down the heating and bundle up. Or at the very least, make sure you turn off the heat whenever you leave the house/apartment.
Protip: If you live with roommates, it’s not a bad idea to set some house rules for when the heat should be on. (Especially if you have that one roommate who insists on turning his/her room into a sauna)
Finally, while winter may have its challenges, it is also one of the most beautiful times of the year in Halifax. Don’t forget to have fun!