Snowshoes and Sunscreen

By : Emma Johnston

By: Emma Johnston
On Sunday morning I woke up and my house was sixteen degrees. Freezing, I quickly ran and turned the furnace on for the first time this season. This week has brought the chillier half of our fall weather with cold nights, rain and ugly grey skies.
It’s the reminder that here in Ontario we experience some of the most diverse weather days in the world. With frosty nights and hot afternoons, we could see 25 degree differences from when we get up in the morning, to the time we sit down for dinner that night.
We’ve learned to dress for it – layers upon layers. Half the time I should put my kids in snow pants in the morning and pack them shorts to wear in the afternoon. We have days that are sunny and beautiful and the autumn leaves look stunning against the blue skies. The next day is cold, we’re pulling out our mittens and toques and heavy grey clouds dampen the colours of the season.
Our weather reminds me of how adaptable we are as Canadians. We could live in the tropics with warm weather and nightly rains, we could live in the dessert with blistering hot, but consistent weather. We could live in England with the nearly endless drizzle of rain, but we don’t. We’ve chosen to live here, where in the summer it can be upwards of 35 degrees and in the winter 20 degrees below! We get knee deep snow, and sun so hot it burns our grass. We get months of rain each fall and surprise snow storms in April. If nothing else our extreme weather has made us adaptable!
Think how well we transition from one season to the next. We have clothes for different months of the year, boots and sandals, coats and umbrellas. Almost everyone I know has mittens and sunscreen in their home at any one time. We skate, swim and ride our bikes. We have snowmobiles, beach blankets and dirt bikes. We are resilient, adaptable and capable people. We make it work.
This year has made us adapt, change and maneuver through life’s unexpected twists and turns more than usual. As we approach Halloween I am again, seeing people adapt. Some families are doing scavenger hunts, outside games or having family theme nights. Our family is delivering goodie bags to some of our friends. Maybe we’ll watch a Halloween movie, make candy apples and carve pumpkins. The truth is, like we’ve always done, not just in 2020, but for our entire lives, we adapt. We rise above, go with the flow and make the best of it.
I know this is what we’ll keep doing, each and every one of us – we’ll do it because we are good at it, we adapt, change, adjust, rethink and rise above. Halloween is another reminder that things don’t always stay the same or go as planned, but for us Ontarians – it’s no problem, we’ll just strap on our snow shoes and go to the beach!

Snowshoes and Sunscreen

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