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Holi heat, wouldn’t it be nice to ice skate in Amsterdam?

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After Holi, the temperature heats up in these parts. What that means now in Mumbai is getting increasingly warmer and humid. And if you are crazy enough to go out and about during the sunny day… let’s just say your sweat will sweat!

Oddly I used to be pretty ok with this. So I thought… til I realised that was because I used to work in nice air-conditioned offices and commute in my nice air-conditioned car. These days, operating from home and generally getting around by walking, rickshaws (and sometimes car) means no such daily respite.

Don’t get me wrong, I do NOT miss -40’c winter, and given a choice between sweating and freezing, I’ll take sweat! However there is a tiny part of me that can’t help but flirt with enjoying a little chill.

Which is why my November 2014 trip to Amsterdam was all the more memorable for its flash of ‘winter’ before being replaced on my return with familiar Bombay sandals and sleeveless tops.

So… indulge me while I rewind the clock a few months and pretend I’m back in wintery Amsterdam. Call it a little psychological escapism from melting in Mumbai… ‘cus just like Winnipeg winters go on for months and months, this is just the beginning of the heat and humidity for me!

Rijks Museum, Nov 2014

Rijks Museum, Nov 2014

After spending a day wandering around Bibliotheek + Conservatorium, we headed to the Rijksmuseum to meet with other friends.

There we stumbled upon a flurry of activity, green balloons going up in to the sky and a brass band proudly belting out the official opening of the skating pond in Museumplein.

Skating opening

Skating rink opening

As we passed the delightful restaurant beside the rink, my friend shared how one must have poffertjes (mini pancakes) after skating.

Skating rink

First few brave souls….

The day earlier, we saw skating rinks opening in Leidseplein, Thorbeckeplein close to Rembrandtplein and Beursplein near Dam Square and Westergasfabriek. All these rinks opening is a sign in Amsterdam that it is OFFICIALLY winter!

Skating rink

Followed as the evening progressed by more and more..

While I enjoyed watching others twirl, slip and whiz around on the rink, this is not a skill I’ve mastered. While my family back in Winnipeg can curl, skate and ski with aplomb… I’m frankly wretched at winter sports! Clearly from an early age was more inclined to warmer climes.

And yet I do appreciate the magic of the crisp clear winter air, the warmth of a crackling fire. Yup! There it is again… the wisp of a hankering for a little quiet snow and chill.

Stay warm my friends in colder climes! And chill out folks where it is getting hotter day by day!

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  1. I know exactly what you are talking about because I feel the same way. I also don’t miss the harsh winters in Canada but it is now getting hot in Taiwan and I do wish it was once again December or January so I could experience a little coolness.

    • Haha! I’m soooo glad I’m not the only one! 😉

      What’s so weird is I should be used to this by now… I think this is my 15th Indian summer so you would think I should have no complaints!

  2. NancyTex says:

    I’m like Goldilocks. I don’t like it too hot; don’t like it too cold. I’m thinking San Diego would be my perfect climate. Never hotter than 85F; never colder than 70F. Ahh. I can get behind that plan.

    • Yeah well that makes two of us. 😉

      For me – humidity is a big factor. I grew up on the prairies so our pride point was always ‘but its a DRY cold’ meaning -40’c really isn’t THAT could if it is dry!

      Flip it around and I weirdly survived several scorching summers in Delhi where the temperature in the shade would be 46’c whereas Mumbai generally doesn’t get into the +40’s c territory but when you add in the humidity, feel completely sluggish and lazy.

      What’s getting me now is I see months of this ahead and am already grumpy! Which is a bad sign. 😉

  3. James says:

    I love the idea of experiencing both a hot summer and a cold winter… there is something romantic about having snow on the ground and feeling the cold on your face.

    When I studied in England there was one February when the entire country shut down because of 4-5 inches of snowfall. They closed the airports and the local councils ran out of salt. The university suspended classes for 3 days because the buses couldn’t get up the hill!

    My housemates warned me to stay inside (“It’s slippery, you’ll fall!”) but I couldn’t resist going out to take photos. That winter I spent Christmas in a very snowy Toronto so I found it hilarious that the Brits couldn’t cope.

    • Hehe! I can top that story. 🙂 We were living in Hamilton just outside of Toronto while my father did his PhD at McMasters. They had a ‘blizzard’ (note the quotes) which shut the city down. For us kids from Winnipeg we thought it was hilarious but who were we to complain about getting a day off school! I think the temperatures were barely below zero but there was finally sufficient SNOW for my sister and I to build a quinsy in the backyard. Imagine piling up all the snow you can get your hands on – jumping on it to pack it down then burrowing out a cosy little den inside. That’s a quincy! We stayed out playing all day only coming indoors for lunch and bathroom breaks. Our horrified neighbours called Child & Family Services as they thought we were endangered as our parents permitted us to stay outdoors!!?!

      • James says:

        You are right Carissa – that is seriously funny! As a kid I would have loved to make a quincy. Even now the idea of a cosy little snow den still has its appeal. 🙂

        • Yup! It does. 🙂 We thought it was a riot that the neighbours just didn’t understand we were in zero danger and there was no enticement our parents could do to keep us inside!

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