Advent Calendar / 18 December
Are you dreaming of a white Christmas?
In Sweden, the early winter this year has already provided so much snow that the thought of even more of it is likely to cause nightmares rather than classic Bing Crosby sentimentality.
On Wednesday this week, we had had cold, clear day here in the south-west, around -13°C (8.5 F). In the night, the temperature rose to 0°C (32 F) in a few hours, and it started snowing (or raining, esp. closer to the coast). On top of that, a strong wind blowing. And it kept on snowing most of the day.
The top photo in this post was taken the day after the snowstorm; turned into black-and-white - not that that made much difference! – and the snowfall effect was added in Picnik.
The photos below were taken through my windows in the snowfall.
The media warned people in this area from going out if they didn’t have to. I did not have to, so I took the advice and stayed in. As the day proceeded, I was more than glad that I did!
The sudden temperature changes glazed some roads with ice, while others were blocked by heavy snowfall. Not for the first time this winter, trains stopped running and airports were closed. Accidents were multiple, especially along the west coast. Trucks went off the road and blocked the rest of the traffic. A bus turned over. In Gothenburg, pedestrians were unable to stay on their feet in the streets because the rain froze to ice as soon as it hit the ground. The Emergency Rooms at the hospitals were crowded. All ambulances were out picking up people in a never-ending queue, and they had to call in every orthopedic surgeon they could get hold of to take care of all the fractures.
Friday morning, I again woke up to -13°C, and a bleak sun sometimes peeking out from behind the clouds.
I managed to get into town by bus in the morning to get some groceries; and later a short walk to the small local shop as well. So if necessary, I’m all set to get snowed in again over the weekend! More snow is predicted, after which it will get colder again.
Most likely, Christmas will be white and cold all over the country. That is far from always the case here in the south.
My local newspaper had some statistics: In our town, looking back over the past 20 years, 13 Christmases out of 20 were NOT white. Last year was actually the first white Christmas we’d had since 2001. But December this year will probably turn out the coldest December in Sweden in 100 years - or even 150, someone just said on the news!