In the dead of winter, it penetrates every fibre of your being, gets in your skin, chills you to your bones. Once there, it's hard to shake, hard to warm back to a feeling of normality.
As I age, I find I like the cold less. I hate dressing in layers, hate changing in and out of boots that collect dirty slush and salt. Navigating wet areas of floor with socks intact.
Always seeking warmth.
In the dead of winter, when I feel the chilling bite, I wonder why I do it. Why do I stay in this city that sees temperatures that are colder than Siberia, in a country that sees temperatures colder than Mars—than MARS... a planet further from the sun than our own!
And then I walk the Rideau Canal at night, and I see the beauty of the snow-covered trees, how the steam and smoke from stacks dance in the air. I see skaters enjoying the world's largest skating rink, doing what they couldn't do anywhere else.
And I know.
This city, like the chill, is in my bones. It may make me shiver, but it also warms my heart.
There's no place I'd rather be.