Sunday, March 23, 2008

The Great White North

[Kyle] I've been working up in Canada for the last few days, first in Quebec City then Moncton, New Brunswick. Even though it's officially Spring, Winter is definitely still in full swing up here. In Quebec City, it's been too cold for snow to melt for ages and the accumulation is more than 10 feet in most places. The snow has all transformed into hard ice that completly obscures the ground floor of everything. The roofs on one story houses out of town just look like continuations of the pile in the front yard. Everywhere you go, there are trenches cut through the snow for roads and walkways by snow blowers. I saw one pile of now at the end of a small parking lot that was as high as the 4 story apartment building behind it. There was one point at which I was considering scurrying across the crust to save myself some considerable trench distance. Then I realized that if I fell through, I would be in over my head like an avalanche victim and that once I got to the other side, the jump would be too high to make anyway. Moncton is slightly better with only about half the accumulation but it is still so very cold up here. Every time I come up here, I get such respect for just how tough Canadians really are. To persist in building a society where the winters are this bad and this long really requires a special kind of fortitude. It makes the unpleasant boatyard chores go a little easier with some perspective. At least I won't have to put on six layers just to go outside and I don't have to dig my car out of anything when it rains, even if it's one of those awful cold rains.

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