Tag Archives: Winter

Winter 2012

On the personal side: This month the weather has been really wet and mild. The weather has been hovering around the -5 to +7 degrees. I recall we only had 2 or 3 days really cold weather (-19s). Additionally, we had a couple of snow days, but since the temperature still goes up during the day, most of the snow has melted and/or changed into ice. It definitely doesn’t make for good photo opportunities.

Continuing on that post I made earlier this month on Elite and X3 (here): I decided to get Evochron Mercenary. From the initial screens,the impression I got is that this game strongly resembles Elite. It looks like fun (you know, that is if you like these free-form games) but you can’t compare it to the X3 series. Evochron seems to focus on the Newtonian flight model: to be honest, the flight model is not all too different from X3. When I find time (time is precious), I’ll take a closer look at EM. Get it or not? Well: it’s not badly priced. If you’re into games with a steep learning curve, you should check it out.

Having spent almost 100 hours on X3:Albion Prelude, I find the game itself sort of boring: this is mostly because there are no real missions in this extension pack. Sadly, X3:AP does not include the X3:TC missions and as far as I can tell only contains one true mission. Egosoft promised to reintroduce the PHQ (Player Headquarters) in a V2 of X3:Albion Prelude, but the emptiness has quite some people upset. Lets hope I can run X Rebirth on my laptop.

This. means. Winter.

The last couple of days I had the tune of the game ‘This Means War’ (Microprose, 1993? 1994?) in my head and that, generally, is not a good sign.

I mean, from Thursday to Saturday the thermometer hit a new low with 30 degrees Celsius at night and in the early morning. If you can’t imagine how that feels, lets say it this way: -19 degrees is a lot warmer than -30. You can also easily tell the difference between the two temperatures: if it’s -30, whatever you breath out will freeze right on contact with the cold air. This doesn’t happen rightaway at -19 degrees Celsius.

There were also early warnings that we’re were going to get snow on Monday (tomorrow), but today, I have already cleaned the deck twice. Tomorrow it will be a bright white day, I think.

But I don’t want to close on a bad note, though: As they say in the US, ‘the state of the climate of New Brunswick is strong’. For example, I was always convinced that February was the coldest month of the year: However, Weather Canada says that statistically (the numbers, the numbers), January is the coldest month:

January is the coldest month in New Brunswick… [ ] … At Edmundston, the January mean temperature is -12.2C. As we move south, however, this coldness is gradually tempered by the effects of latitude and, to a greater extent, the sea. Along the south-eastern shores, the January mean is around -7.5C.

Uh, although I think they have to include this years temperatures. That will probably bring the average down to, a uh, slightly bit more.

Uh. Yeah.

Nowadays, King Street, Saint John I check the weather on the iPod Touch using an app made by the WeatherChannel: besides forecasting the weather it also prominently features an advertisement for the Chevrolet Aveo. I find that a kind of funny, considering the crisis the US automakers are ‘weathering’ today.

But yes, what can I say about the weather besides that when earlier mentioned WeatherChannel iPod Touch Application prominently shows a red banner that reads ‘WEATHER WARNING SNOW AND DRIFTS WITH BLOWING SNOW LOLS OMGZZZZ’ it is probably going to be a bad hair-day (CBC report 1 and CBC report 2). Earlier this morning, I was not able to open the deck door so I had to find an escape route, walked around the house through knee deep snowbanks to pick up my snow shovels. Both of course were ‘conveniently’ stored in or around the backyard, which was already covered by a snow blanket as high as the Saturn V rocket. Note to self and tip to other snow lovers: if you have 2 or more shovels, you probably don’t want to keep or store them together. Digging out a path through the snow on the deck wasn’t the hardest part though: I had a harder time walking out of the driveway because of the mix of heavy snow and ice thrown back into our yard by the snowplows. I feel sorry for the people who have to clean up the sidewalks, though: when I was walking back home, our street’s sidewalk was still buried under a thick pack of ice (50 cms or so). This brought me up to the following idea for the EA video game studios in Canada: How come we still don’t have a ‘sidewalk snow clearing’ game?

Looking back, this was probably the second worst snowstorm I have seen during my stay over here. What makes it worst is that, what, it’s the 4th snow storm of the year and it’s only December. And I thought Truro, Nova Scotia was bad.

And then for…

And then for something slightly different: More of the same! You guessed it: Yesterday morning, I was surprised to find we were a bit snowed in. When I say snowed in, I mean that I have to use force to open up the front door. I think, Debert weather station reported 26 cms and it really looks like that much. This makes for slightly nice pictures, if it wasn’t so cold outside. The bad news is that it is supposed to be snowing overnight (and in the morning) again. The good news is that the snow will change to freezing rain and eventually to rain tomorrow night.

With that out of the way: Via Kottke, I found this map of New York, er, an imaginative map of whatever was New York if it was still in the hands of the Dutch powers. I don’t think I have to remind the reader that New York used to be in the hands of the Dutch and that (after many wars and battles with the British empire) they traded it for portions of South America. What you say? You really like the fictional flag for this ‘Dutch republic’ (taken from the original creator’s blogpost)? Is that the Japanese ‘Rising Sun’ in the flag? Oh dear.

And last but not least: Newsweek reports that Amsterdam is to close down its Red Light district. The most surprising part is that the main driving force behind the campaign (to close down the district) is a member of the Labour Party. Socialists closing down the Public Sector in Amsterdam? What will the British think of this?

The driveway

I think it’s an understatement if I’d say that last week, we’ve gone through quite some weather. Monday, we started out with lots of rain which at the end made our driveway look like the perfect ‘slide and glide ramp’ for the Nova Scotian Winter Olympics of 2032. The situation in Nova Scotia wasn’t as nearly as bad as in PEI, of course: overthere, the storm turned into a freezing rain storm, eventually knocking out power in many regions on the island.

Then, Friday (and Saturday), Weather Canada called for another storm: Friday, the winterstorm hit Ontario and Quebec (which you can read about it on the Internationalist).

Yesterday, that storm hit our region and, yes again, it brought too much wind and too much rain, which (in turn) made our driveway look like the perfect place for hosting the 2056 Nova Scotian Driveway Marathon.

Around the world

A couple of Rosie Swale Popedays ago, the local news paper had an article about a lady from Wales who’s walking around the world. Rosie Swale Pope started her run in 2003 and is scheduled to finish her travels this year. She passed by Truro, I think and is on her way to Halifax now.

The Daily News also has a short video clip, which shows her walking through one of our famous (Canadian) Winter storms (I bet that the clip won’t be archived and will go in the Halls of 404 in a couple of years, so I’d say hurry and watch it, before it disappears). Looking at the footage, I keep thinking how dangerous it is to actually walk on the road with that big of a cart behind you.

That said: good for her for doing this on her own. Stay safe and stay clear from the snowplows, ma’am.