Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Mercury still dropping

Sad to report that January 16 was not the coldest night of the year. When I got up this morning it was -47C. And if that isn't freaky enough, the power went off last night for a good hour. We have a woodstove, and I quickly sized up the logs stacked next to it. Time to lay in a bigger supply, I'd say. There's a lot of ice fog right now - probably caused hoar frost on the power lines, and that caused the outage.

To celebrate the cold snap, I climbed to the top of Bush Pilots Monument this evening to take a photo of the ice fog over the city. Here's what I got (in addition to frostbitten fingers).

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Coldest night of the year?

Went down to -41C last night. Not surprising for January in Yellowknife.

Compensations? Saw the northern lights last night while walking home from work. When it's cold, it's clear, and it's the first time in ages that I've seen them. Spent today in a workshop in a local hotel conference room. From the windows we could see down the Franklin Avenue hill to the Old Town. Trees, rocks, the Franklin Avenue Trailer Park - everything white and misty with ice fog. At mid-morning a nice pastel sunrise - yellow, pink, a touch of blue sky before the clouds moved in.

It's -34C right now - things are heating up!

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Christmas in Yellowknife

Another holiday season draws to a close. The Christmas cookies are long gone. All that remains of the turkey is an inch of soup in the bottom of the pot. The eggnog I feel compelled to buy every year was used to make French toast this morning.

This Christmas has been relatively quiet - the festive season in Yellowknife is generally a month-long binge of eating and drinking as we all try to blow off some steam, bulk up our fat reserves to counter the -30 degree weather, and try to forget that we're getting a mere four hours of sunlight a day . . . and that's only if the sun actually shines. (Which it hasn't been, lately.)

A highlight of the season was a reveillon (French Canadian Christmas Eve celebration) out on one of the houseboats. In the summer the houseboats bob happily on the waters of Yellowknife Bay; in winter, of course, they are frozen into the ice. There was a bonfire outside, and a toasty woodstove inside, along with tourtiere, sugar pie, salad rolls (okay, not a French Canadian speciality, but memorable just the same), and many other treats. In years gone by, we'd go to parties on another of the houseboats. The road across the ice to that one was fairly straight, and when the house was quiet and a vehicle was approaching, it sounded like a bowling ball coming down the alley.

The downtime over the holiday was been a good thing - 2007 was a bit much, at times. I'm now getting my ducks in a row for 2008. I've made arrangements to go to some writing events, started a new piece, and bought a new memory card for my camera, so I can take more YK pics. Onward, ho.