Winter Broodings


I used to pride myself on my Norwegian-ness.

In particular, boasting of how I enjoyed the cold, and how hell is hot so why would anyone want to go there, and so on.

Take me north, I said, to 4-season weather.

So we moved to Ohio.

Oh how silly I was in my youth.

Now in the middle of my second winter in the China tundra, I have a revised perspective.

I am now transformed.  Enlightened.  Brainwashed.  A woman of the world.  Seasoned.

Getting old, most likely.

Somehow I am NOT dashing out the door every day to spend hours on the river ice rink, mini-sledding hill, or play in the (rather black) snow with the kids.

Go, husband, take the kids please.

Something about what seems like months (really, since November), of degrees that are nearly equal in F and C, has taken its toll on my hardiness.

The wind is out of my sails, and I am speeding towards warmer temperatures.

My heart is in the tropics.   My mind is on the beach.

My body?  Long underwear even inside my apartment, going through gallons of hot tea and coffee.

Spring, thou art so distant.

Looks are deceiving.  The sun mostly shines on a frozen landscape.

The truth lies in the ice forming on our uninsulated balcony windows, where our drying clothes are frozen scarecrows.

I have decided part of my earlier delusions of grandeur were related to a controlled exposure to the elements, i.e. attached garage, preheated car, oh yeah, owning a car, driving to get places and parking near an entrance, and getting back into a warm car when finished with my occasional outside activities.

I’m not complaining, mind you.

Nor do I think I have Seasonal Affective Disorder.

I’m just venting for a moment.

My lifestyle is self-inflicted, but more about that some other time.

It’s just really really cold here.

On the plus side, I am spending more time indoors with the kids on winter school break, and we’re playing lots of games, doing some American homeschooling, creating artsy things, watching the fireworks revving up for Chinese New Year, things like that.

Good bonding time with all of the offspring, since I’m taking a school break as well.

We are also counting down the days till our first family vacation since we arrived here 19 months ago.

Sun, sand, water.

9 days to go!



8 responses »

  1. Love this one! I have much to appreciate rather than take for granted! I have been walking at the local park to get myself in touch with winter. Take care; spring is coming! Taylor says hello to the girls. Love to all! Cathy

  2. I am so glad I will be seeing you on the beaches in eternity – I hated thinking that you would be on the snowy parts and I may not see you forever!

  3. Where will you go on your vacation? Have a great time! I am also really struggling with winter this year – only a few days of sun all month and temps mostly in the low 20’s. Yuck. I torture myself by checking the weather in Austin, Phoenix and San Diego daily. Must be a mental condition since it serves no purpose! Is the wash hanging outside b/c you don’t have a dryer? Hang in there – I know it’s hard but spring WILL come.

    • Thailand–family days alone first then a medical conference! Oh, and correct, no dryer…At least they dry overnight, unlike really humid places in southern China…And I check the weather in Phoenix often enough too b/c of family living there. Hang in you too!

  4. Ah – your honesty is much appreciated. I am praying for you as these cold gray days of winter grow longer. May your days on the beach be wonderful, warm, and invigorating.

    I continue to be touched deeply by your posts. The depths of your experience there are beyond any most of us have ever known. Praise God for your brave hearts and willing spirits. Don’t beat up on yourself for having some discouraging days.

    Blessings to B and all the kids.

    • Thanks! And fortunately, the winter solstice was Dec 22 or something like that so the days are less dark and the forecast says high of 30 tomorrow! Appreciate your words of encouragement.

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