Tuesday, January 29, 2008

We would like to think we're not wusses...

According to the news here in China, this has been the coldest winter in the past 5 or 20 years. Depending on who you ask or what paper you read.

Periodically, okay, just about everyday for the past 2 weeks, I have been griping about how cold and damp it is here. No, it's not the cold winters of Canada or the U.S. where it may get -20C or so. The temperature if you look at it, will read about 12C. That's nothing, was the response that I received from my brother. I protested and complained that it wasn't just the cold and draft coming through the windows (apparently you don't have heat in apts. if you live below the Yellow River) but also the dampness. You can't even see the outside of the windows after we take showers. I still got the "whatever" attitude and without saying it basically called me a wuss.

Just to show that I'm not the only one here squawking, there are some blogs out there written by fellow Canadian, Brits, and Americans commenting on the frigid weather. One has a list of things you should do to keep warm. People are wearing hats, long underwear, and gloves, and yes this is inside their homes. I will even provide a link for you to read just to prove our point.

Here's a little blurb from China daily the other day: (This is the province where we are located.)

"Last night, 100,000 passengers packed the square in front of the railway station in heavy rain; another 50,000 crouched inside the building or under nearby crossovers," said an official in Yuexiu district of Guangzhou."

Passengers queue at the Fuzhou Railway Station to buy or refund tickets after the bad weather blocked trains arriving in Fuzhou, East China's Fujian Province, January 27, 2008.

And from Reuters: "Police and soldiers stand guard as tens of thousands of passengers crowd Guangzhou Railway Station, in southern China's Guangdong province, January 29, 2008."

I have tried layers of socks and different slippers which don't seem to help, and once your feet are cold, it's difficult to warm up. As we were in bed, Mark commented how this felt like camping to him with the sheets damp and cold. Okay, my camping days are over.

Finally I broke down yesterday and decided to by a heater. We wanted to get one that had a drying rack so that socks and towels could dry. Off I go to TrustMart only to discover the price for these puppies where quite high and couldn't find one with a drying rack. So I bought the next best thing.

Yup, fuzzy, pink, pig slippers. My feet are nice and toasty! The beauty of these slippers, is that they have a rubber sole and are 1/2 inch from the floor.

As for the cold damp bed, I did what any good wife would do...

Have her husband hop into bed first to warm up her side!


Lisa Wilson said...

You Wichmann's must have brought the cold weather to China. I read online it even snowed there!!! It is freezing here in Chicago and I would call you wusses but since you don't have heat I won't!! Love the slippers Tina!!

mimifrancoise said...

If you have a microwave oven get a large clean sock. Fill it with rice and knot it closed. Put it in the microwave for 2 or 3 minutes, then put it in your bed a few minutes before you get in....nice and warm bed! I am enjoying reading your blog. My daughter was is Xiamen a semester. She taught at the Xiada law school. I went to visit for the month of May. I loved the flowers. From your photos, I recognize a lot of the places we visited.

Tina said...

I will have to try the sock/rice idea. Great idea.

I am a student at Xia Da, and love the grounds. Xiamen is quite lovely and usually warm.

Tina said...

Lisa, I thought perhaps that the slippers may be on sale. It still cost me 28RMB about 4USD.

We're saying goodbye to the pig and hello to the rat which just happens to be Mark's year.

mimifrancoise said...

Tina, I forgot to say to use a tube sock to put the rice in (don't fill it too full as it gets too heavy. Sometimes I use one around my shoulders when they hurt and it really helps. We have several of these, they are so easy and inexpensive to make.