In the Starkness and the Darkness 

It’s time to celebrate winter in all of its many forms. 

This year I really saw it as a sort of living death. You sometimes feel you walk through apocalyptic zones but there is a certain beauty in austerity.    Every time I walked by this tree but one there was a single crow sitting on a branch. 

I think of the salt flats in Bolivia which I loved for their silence (if there weren’t three Frenchmen talking).


On a recent walk I found things pared down to the bare necessities. Sometimes it’s dim and grim but it makes you reflect on life. 

You will notice the hardy plants which are the last men standing  and take strength from these brave soldiers. 


There is always the water which can vary from water to ice or both. Sometimes it is nonexistent and other times it gushes after a heavy rain seeking its release. 


There will always be change and you can always find something good in any situation. Large flakes in your  face can be invigorating. 

On a recent walk on a cool and cloudy  prestorm morning I focused on sound in the calm before…

I heard some roofers hammering and one sang “Roxanne”.   

A man gave me a hearty “Good morning .”

I heard the pitty pats of runners numerous times with heavy breathing. 

There was the rubber to ashphalt sound of cyclists and no other warnings of their approach. 

Sounds of chickadees and other unknowns. Ducks flew close overhead flapping their wings in a race against the impending storm. 

The rest was frozen still. The strong yet silent ones finally got their due. They would survive another day. 

Winter in the Second Coldest Country in the World 

So no that is not fireworks or missiles but a pic of snow that you too could have if you like winter like Ellen from the blog Travelling the World Solo. She attributes a bad burn in childhood in Australia to her love of cold.  That and wanting what you don’t have.  It is fresh and crisp. 

  1. I meet more and more Aussies in Canada. One told me it was a lot like home except for the driving on the right side of the road.  Somehow she didn’t mention the opposite weather but hotter isn’t always better. It has its hassles. 


I can enjoy soup a lot more. The other day sans camera I saw an eagle circling overhead as I walked a city trail in Halifax. 

There was ice and semi-ice with water running underneath.  Things I can’t see in other seasons.

I  can take a brisk walk and still sweat in winter.  Red berries left over stand out more. 

This year I finally bought a tuque and it doesn’t get more Canadian than that.  It goes well with my long coat which is not Canada Goose but does the warming job nicely.  Fun winter fashion. 


I often take long walks in my shorter coat. 

  • It packs nicely in a small bag and would be great for travel. Always thinking.  
  • Also don’t wear black as many do and winter is dull enough and also you should have more visibility with short and dark days 

I find it a good time to catch up on reading such as books by Anthony Bourdain or Martha Gellhorn. 

I also recently got Netflix so there is too much to watch.  Luckily I make it out to teach English to an Iraqi who came here via Syria and loves it. 

So come whenever and enjoy as 2017 is Canada’s year and the East coast is known to be very friendly. 


Every season has its good and bad points. The East coast seems to be having the best winter so far thanks to La Niña which is adversely affecting the  Caribbean and western North America.  We got some snow today and will get some tomorrow night but most days are above zero in the next week except the next three. 

Happy New Year!