Saturday, 4 February 2012

Brrrr, it’s cold out there! There must be a Canadian in the atmosphere!


How cold is it in Germany? There was a huge temperature drop and Thursday’s 9 am temperature was -19°C with the wind chill and not that much warmer at the peak of the day. I was told that Germany’s winters went as low as -10°C generally and had plenty of snow. I was looking forward to such a mild winter! Instead, my German winter has consisted of: hardly any snow..enough to just coat the grass..but even that only arrived the previous weekend, and freezing cold temperatures. 

Being from Ottawa, Ontario, I am prepared for the temperature to reach -40° C with the wind chill….but that doesn’t mean I enjoy it. 

The Germans keep saying things like “you must be use to this kind of weather in Canada”.

I enjoy listening to their perspectives on our weather. They’re implying this must be nothing for us or that we might even find this weather warm, in some cases. Well it is warm…when it has already reached the coldest temperature of the year and is then working its way back up to the warmer weather. Last year, my boyfriend and friends came to visit me in Ottawa during reading week of February. It was -30°C with the wind chill and they were only use to getting temperatures as low as -20°C on the cold days. “It’s freezing” they said. I told them it was much warmer than it had been the previous week, so this was an improvement!

However, it has only just reached this cold weather temperature and I am just as cold as everyone else is. I am not enjoying it!! I am just as excited to finally reach my destination and go inside to the heat. However, I am finding that once I am inside, that warm feeling only lasts for so long... 

It seems as though the Germans do not have central heating. Every room has its own heater (or even two if it’s a larger room) that you can turn up or down as you please. Every room except our kitchen and hallway, that is. Someone must have forgotten to install a heater in our kitchen so instead we have a space heater and heat the space as needed. It’s cold in the morning and again when we get home from work. The hallway between our apartment and the one downstairs has no heater or heat coming to it at all. It felt as though I was putting my feet into shoes that had been left outside overnight. And, it feels as though the heat we have in our bedroom/living room only reaches so far…the dressing area around the corner is cold as well. Although that might also be because for the past 2 hours, the heater has been blowing cold air and has only just decided it will heat back up again. We have already turned the thermostat up to 26°C!!! We should be overheating. The bathroom does have a heater, but the Germans don’t use bathroom fans, so we have to open the window in the mornings. To top it all off, the elevator at the apartment where I work, would not leave the bottom floor today because it was just too cold. So much for German engineering, poor equipment can hardly keep up.

All of that combined, it’s turning out to be a cold one here in N├╝rnberg. How lucky for me to be here in Germany, when they are experiencing such abnormal weather.

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