And so it begins!

Because I’m recording this experience for posterity, I would like to state for the record that my first Saguenay snowfall occurred on Thursday, October 11, 2012. Yes, it snowed this morning. It started with sleet, little ice pellets bouncing off the ground. That changed to rain for a bit, but by the time I was in Ginny heading to the gym, it had turned to snow.  Nothing “stuck” on the ground or other surfaces yet, but still.  My first Canadian snowfall.  There’s a lot, a LOT more where that came from.

I’m a bit worried about this whole winter thing. The young lady who assisted me at the shoe store as I bought the first pair of real winter boots I’ve owned as an adult thought I was funny. She couldn’t believe that I wore flip flops throughout the “winter” last year. I’m even more anxious about the fast approaching winter because I’m on my own here for a couple more months before the husband finally returns. If he were here, I’d have him checking out those temporary tent-like structures people around here put up around their entryways and carports. As it is, I’m just going to muddle through with the snowblower my father-in-law gave to me until the husband comes home. And I’m going to hoard food. FINALLY, I have an excuse that makes sense of my food-hoarding tendencies! You hear that, husband? NO MORE MAKING FUN OF ME FOR HOARDING FOOD! It’s no longer one of my many idiosyncracies (like my certainty I’ll get shanked if I don’t sit with my back to a wall in a restaurant); it’s now a survival tactic.

*sigh* I also have to get someone out to service our gas fireplace. I was sooooo proud of myself for reading all the instructions and getting the pilot light lit…but the burner won’t light. Hopefully someone at the deployment support center can assist me with calling to schedule service for the fireplace. I can usually limp through communications in person despite the language barrier, but the phone is useless to me until I learn a bit more French. I also need some help getting Ginny serviced. She’s due for an oil change (all that driving back and forth to see my favourite human adds up!), plus I want a full inspection. She’s got an odd vibration sometimes, and I think I hear her suspension sometimes (yes, that sounds as stupid to me as it does to you, but it’s true). Also, I think there’s some kind of coating you can get to try to help prevent rusting due to the slush/snow/road salt. So many things to learn about making it through a devilish northern winter!

I’m not ready. Not at all. But amidst the worries and the fears, there’s some excitement, too. 32 years old, and THIS should finally be the winter I get to try to ski and snowboard. I have one friend who says she’ll teach me to snowshoe and another who says he’ll teach me to snowboard (and to drive in the snow). And there’s always the redneck Okie sport of car-sledding! I have a disc sled and a 4×4 vehicle, all I need is a tow-rope and my Canadian husband to come home and drive.

It’s not all bad, by any means. I’ve got to get out and buy a real winter coat ($$$ ugh!), and I need a few more articles of warm clothing. Then I’ll be ready to hoard some food, hunker down, and get busy surviving.

Dear Saguenay Winter,

I’m a virgin. Please take it easy, at least until the husband gets home to help me. I guess today was foreplay. Let’s not get too rough too quickly, okay?

Sincerely,

The Terrified Quebec Okie

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