Monday, December 05, 2005

My Skin is Trying to Desert Me!

Why? Because I brought it to Calgary in the winter. In fact, it's trying to detach itself from my body and take the next flight back to Ontario.

So lets talk about the horrid winter experiences that I've had in this city. I'm in that kind of mood. Calgary, usually I love you, but you try me dearly at the end of the year.

One past winter visit, in particular, spotlights just why you and I will always have a contentuous relationship when it comes to the cold. My hotel was located just a few short blocks from my company’s office tower, and even though the cold was enough to make my monkey crazy, the thought of taking a cab offended me to no end. I was tough! I was a woman of steel, and may have just had the Underoos to prove it! I had boots with a heavy tread! And mitts! And a hat! Goddamn it, I was prepared for the cold.

Right. For the cold. Not for the thieving air that stole every bit of moisture out of my body.

Though I was only there for three days, when I returned home, I came across a horrifying souvenir of my travels – a dry circle of skin around both ankles, at the exact location where my boot (and always falling down in a pool around my ankles socks) ended. The freaking air! I swear it stole up my pant leg like a thief in the night (day) and left its mark. Took weeks for the marks to fade. Weeks, I say.

Another Calgary business trip saw me, replete with inflatable cast Robot Foot (much to my chagrin, having a Robot Foot did not, it seem, help to improve my break dancing) encasing my right leg, from foot to knee, strolling to and from hotel to office again. Broken foot! Snow on ground! Taxi? Hell no. Confession: I am insufferably cheap. Even when the company is footing (Robot Footing) the bill. And also, 6 blocks. At the most. Seriously, folks, isn’t the fact that I work for an Oil and Gas company enough of a smack to the Environment’s face? I feel like it’s my duty to take action against the pollution in my non-work life whenever I can. But I digress.

Anyway, it was March, and I had assumed that Calgary was a sane town, and would’ve quit it with the snow. And it had, at least when I had landed on a Sunday night. The Monday morning was another story. I emerged (hobbled) out of the front enterance of the hotel into a steadily falling snowfall, and at least 3 centimeters of the stuff already on the ground. By the time I got to the office, snow had infiltrated my Robot Foot through the toe opening, and the first half of my sock was soaked through. But that was okay, ‘cause my toes? So cold they weren’t feeling a thing.

But lets face it – anything the Calgary can throw at me will always pale in comparison to February in Winnipeg. Even wearing four layers of winter clothing did nothing to combat the elements. Attempting to breathe the air made my lungs freeze and seize up, and my skeleton may have tried to run away, with plans to hitchhike back to Ontario. At least in Calgary, it's just my skin that's attempting to make a great escape.


erin said...

Can I get an amen?

I moved to Calgary 2 months ago and my lungs, eyeballs, skin, mucous membranes and other bodily tissues have not bothered to adjust to the dryness in the air, not one bit. And I REFUSE to get a humidifier. RE. FUSE.

I've developed a cough. They call it "Calgary asthma." How quaint.

Melissa said...

Oh, Erin, you have my sympathies. One of the things I fear most is being offered a position at our corporate head office that is too sweet to refuse.

But please, for my sake, get your dehydrated ass-skin a humidifier. Cool mist, baby. You NEED it.

PS: X-qwizit, yes? Funny, whenever I'm in Calgary in the winter, I keep repeating to myself, "At least its not Winnipeg". Guess I was wrong?

erin said...

No, no... Calgary still kicks Winnipeg's ass, it must be said.