The first snow of the season was a reminder that winter is coming. Here is what the weather forecast for the week of December 12 includes in both Fahrenheit and Celsius measurements:
Tuesday: F: High of 25, low of 1 C: High of -4, low of -17
Wednesday: F: High of 9, low of 0 C: High of -13, low of -18
Thursday: F: High of 9, low of 4 C: High of -13, low of -16
The conversion formulas are: F to C: (F-32)x5/9 and C to F: (Cx9/5)+32)
You will also see indications of “wind chill” which, according to Wikipedia, is “the perceived decrease in air temperature felt by the body on exposed skin due to the flow of air.” In other words, if it is windy on a cold day, it feels even colder than the ambient temperature.
If you have previously lived in a climate with such temperatures, this is nothing new and you have undoubtedly made the preparations needed. If this is new to you, here are some things to keep in mind:
- Exposure to extreme cold, even for short periods of time, can damage exposed skin. So wear gloves, hats, scarves and if needed, step inside to warm up
- Dressing in layers is the best strategy for staying warm during winter. Rather than one very heavy sweater, wear several thinner layers which lets you adjust to the warmer temperatures indoors and the colder conditions outside
- Skin tends to be dry during winter, so you may need more lotion and a chap stick, and a humidifier may be helpful to alleviate the dry air in your room or apartment
- When snow melts, Hyde Park can quickly turn into an area of very large puddles of very cold water, so waterproof winter boots are a good item to own
- Long dark days make it particularly important to be social, spend time with friends, and playing in ice and snow is a great way to beat the winter doldrums. Ice skating on the Midway or building a snow sculpture can be great fun, especially when followed by your favorite tea or hot chocolate
- Getting enough sleep and exercise and following a healthy diet are now particularly important
Whether you are still on campus or already traveling, and whether you love the snow or need a little extra motivation from friends to enjoy it, OIA’s warmest wishes go with you wherever you are this winter season.