Posts Tagged ‘winter’

winter wear in Canada

winter wear in Canada

Bryan left the following message in my previous post :

I am going to Harbin end of this year. I believe it will be minus 15 Degree during the day.Since I am not living in Subzero Climate for long period, I just bought a Winter Jacket, not those ultra warm type though, but for active sports, where we partially keep ourselves warm while exercising in the cold weather. I think it might not be enough to fend off the cold there.

How many layers of clothing you wear to protect yourself from the cold?

My idea:
1st Under Thermal (Long John shirt and pants)
2nd Long Sleeve T-Shirt
3rd Wool Sweater
4th Thin Down Jacket
5th Wind & Waterproof outer jacket

Ear Warmer
Head Warmer?

Wish me luck! ”

Hey Bryan,

I went online to check the weather in Harbin, yup, it is already around minus 5 to 15 degree during the day !! And currently, the wind gust is around 4-15 mph (6-23 km/h), which is quite strong if you are walking on the streets, especially in wind tunnel (like between tall buildings). So, you have to be quite prepared, especially people like us, who are brought up in tropical weather.

Looking at your 5 layers clothing sandwich, I think you will be fine for the minus 15. However, it depends on the quality of your down jacket and the water/windproof  jacket. It makes all the difference !

windproof jacket with face cover

windproof jacket with chin flaps

Not sure what kind of quality you will get in Malaysia. So, whatever you buy, check the quality properly, or buy trusted brands.  There are hell lots of things to consider for good down or windproof jackets. I am not going to go to the details here and you only go there for a short trip. Just some simple things you should look for. For example, for down jacket, check exactly what the down filling is (make sure is not synthetic) and its fill power (how dense they pack the down/feather); for water/windproof jacket, check the construction of the jacket (how well the jacket is ‘sealed’), fabric lining etc.

I have a windproof jacket that have two ‘flaps’ on my face area (left picture), so when the wind blow fiercely, I can cover half my face, and only leave the eyes out. But I rarely wear it because I think it is very ugly ! Haahaa….do I scare you though? I hope you don’t need those things anyway ! It depends if you are a person who afraid of cold. I need those because I can’t stand cool weather !

Ok, now let’s talk about other accessories.

(1) Gloves – yup, you need a good pair of gloves ! Best is wool or windproof gloves.

(2) Hat/Head Warmer – you definitely need a very good hat/head warmer. Generally, about 30% of body heat lose through our heads, it is quite a significant amount. If you cover your head (especially forehead) properly, you surely will feel warmer. Tips : Don’t buy knit hat, because wind can blow through it easily. Buy wool one,. If you like knit, buy those have an inner (wool) layer.

(3) Ear warmer – If you have a hat that also can cover your ears, I don’t think you need ear warmer.

(4) Sock – Your feet and toes !! You don’t want to have cool feet and toes when you are outside, especially if you have to walk on the snow. Also, most time I dress my body properly, but forget my legs. So,  your under thermal pants will be very helpful. Tips : alternatively, buy very good wool knee length socks. They help me heaps when I don’t feel like wearing my old-lady-like thermal pants 😉

(5) Boot – Very important especially when snowing heavily and have snow/ice accumulation on the ground. A good pair of boot prevent slips.  My boot is knee length, with fur inside, strong rubber sole with deep treads. Of course, it depends how much walking you have to do, otherwise, normal boot should be ok. Tips : Walk on snow-muddy ground, instead of the ‘shiny’ icy ground, which is extremely slippery, unless you like to roller skating 😉

(6) Scarf – Depend on the design of your jacket or if you have turtle neck top. I feel much warmer when my neck is warm, and it prevents cool wind slips inside your body through the neck opening. Tips : When I don’t wear my ugly windproof jacket with the ‘flaps’, I like to wear very large thick scarf. So, I not only use it to cover my neck, I use it to cover half my face when I have to walk against wind gust.

multiples layers and a down jacket

multiple layers and a down jacket

For this photo, I think it was taken on a day of around minus 5-8 degree or so. With the hat, an under thermal, a turtle neck (white), a 200 fleece (blue), and a medium fill power down jacket ( filling : 50% down/50% feathers), I was able to pose for photo with a smile 😉

I hope the above information helps. Shoot me more questions if you still not sure.

Haahaaa… I have too much fun here. I better go back to study for my exam !!! 😦

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太阳跑了出来, 人们也出来了。我也出去拍拍照片。



I was ‘fortunate’ enough to have the chance to experience the worst snowstorm in nearly ten years in Toronto.

The snow was pouring non-stop yesterday.

Ed and I went out during the storm, well, for an experience. It was rare chance.

The streets were covered by 20 to 30 cm of snow and was extremely difficult to walk.

We only walked around our apartment but I was already quite exhausted.

This morning, though still snowing, only lightly.

Sun is out, people are out too. Me too, taking my camera for some photos.

Temporarily ignoring the need to clean up the mess, people want to first enjoy the sunshine-filled beautiful snowwhite city ….

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(Dear English readers, please scroll down to find the ‘click’ for English translation)

刚刚才看到加拿大的气象台预测, 这个星期六晚开始至星期天,有些地区, 包括多伦多, 会下一场大风雪。 多伦多积雪可能会高至15到25 公分,有些地区会有超过40公分的积雪! 不但下大雪, 也会刮大风和下冰雨。 这种天气最危险。气象台特别警告人民路上一定要小心,必要时改变计划最好。

这星期天傍晚,我本来要出席一个佛教集会。我已收到通知,所有集会将取消。几个小时前,我和Ed还没看天气预测。 那时,我们还兴致勃勃,要叫几个朋友星期天出来吃点心。为安全起见,这计划可能要泡汤了。看来,我们还是乖乖呆在家里煮饭看书好了。这里的生活就是这样,很看天气’做人’。 要常查天气预测,计划要随天气更改。



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(Dear English readers, please scroll down to find the ‘click’ for English translation )

当然来到蒙特利尔市,不能不谈它那耸立了几百年的古老法式建筑物。坦白说,我对建筑物不内行, 不敢在此班门弄斧。贴上多多照片就是 (如上,照片是在第一次游蒙特利尔时拍的,那时是夏天)。市中心有一条市中心的主街,Sherbrooke街, 很有趣。这条街很长。街的东部是法式建筑,西部是英式。驾着车在此街上东西跑,也看得出法式和英式建筑的不同。可惜没拍到英式建筑的照片以便比较。抱歉。

这里也有个小小的古城。城中有许多餐馆, 咖啡店, 酒吧等的。小巷中有艺术工作者卖他们的作品。我蛮喜欢的,很有欧洲风味,觉得很浪漫,很美。当然,我没去过欧洲,才大惊小怪。Ed去过欧洲,觉得这里不过如此。 我嘛,自己陶醉就是了。

蒙特利尔也是个节庆 (festival) 之城。听说,它常年办各类型的节庆。它的爵士音乐节是世界闻名的。Ed说,夏季时,几乎每个周末都会有东西看。我第一次去时,也刚好碰上蒙特利尔电影节。一屏大大的银幕摆在主要的大街上,整条街封锁了给电影节用,每个晚上都有好戏免费上映。

我和Ed在第一晚看了一部法国古典名片- Bird Cage。有英文字幕。第二晚去时,上映的是Mission Impossible。可是,我竟一点也看不懂!因为,他们竟配上法语,却没有英文字幕。我当然听不懂啦!别问我为什么他们这样做。可是,看到Tom Cruise讲法语也蛮搞笑的。


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(Dear English reader, please scroll down to find the ‘click’ for English translation)

回来多伦多约一个星期了。 这阵子我都与时差的不适'战斗'着。多伦多与吉隆坡的时差为十二个小时。这里的中午十二点即吉隆坡的午夜十二点。 所以,我在中午会很疲倦,会睡上好几个小时。晚上呢,就会睡不着,或早上四,五点就爬起身来。这两天,好了些。


只是,心情有点不同了。上次来此,算是放自己一个长假,也是为了尝试多伦多的生活,见见Ed 的家人朋友。这次,这里变得熟悉了。而且,完成了在墨尔本的学业,也变卖或捐赠了在墨的一切。现在,没了这些牵挂。也许,算是新生活的真正开始吧。

可是,还在等着加拿大的永久居民证,暂是游客身份。再说,我还要再考药剂师的执照,才可以工作。加上,Ed的工作形式多为合约式。我们可能会再搬到别地也难说。听起来有点困难重重。哈! 这证明爱情有多伟大,把我从老远吸引过来 ! (或也是盲目的 😉 )


现在, 我只想要好好享受多伦多夏天的阳光。这也是我要早点回来的原因。上个冬天把我冷得怕了。虽夏天已过了一半, 可我就喜欢现在的阳光, 不是熨人的热, 只是懒懒地温暖。 Ed也已迫不急待地为我编排了一系列的节目。:)

(photo from http://exploreto.wordpress.com )

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It is winter again !

In Australia, winter started officially on 1st June. This is the THIRD winter for me in less than one year ! Winter was just over in Australia when I left Melbourne last year. I went to Canada and had my first white winter there. Now, i am back to Melbourne and was lucky to enjoy a couple of weeks of some sunshine but the cool is slowly taking over now. It has been quite cool for the last few days, average about 10-14 celcius during the day.

People may think after I had experienced the freezing white coldness in Toronto, I should be able to handle the winter in Melbourne, since it rarely go below zero. Unfortunately, the heating system in Melbuorne is not as adequate compare to Toronto. In Toronto, the heating system is so good that I dress like summer (just a T-shirt is enough) indoor. In Melbuorne, unless if the house has ducted heating, most houses, particulary apartments only have heaters indoor. So, I am freezing cold indoor and have to wear a few layers !

The worst thing is, when I look at the calendar and noticed that the time I am going back to Toronto is highly likely the winter time there again ! It seems like I am chasing after the winter !

Poor me ! I am extremely tired of winter !

Wonder when the winter is going to finish ?

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Ed说,通常春天来之前,会有一个暴风雪。一过了这个暴风雪,就不会再有风雪。 接下来,天气就会好转的了。

前天,乘搭电梯时, 遇到一个铅管工人。 他也是这样告诉我。


那天,看着窗外的暴风雪,忽然想起一句话: 冬必为春。

这句话是用来鼓励人们, 无论在多寒冷严峻的冬天也要振作起来。因为, 冬天过了,春天就一定会到来。这是自然界必定的规律。

可不是吗? 只要挨过这个最后的风雪, 雪就会开始融化,草会慢慢地抬起头来,花也会轻轻地睁开眼睛….


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大约两星期前的一天,气象电视台报导:“This is a major event!” (中文翻译该是:大件事 !)


之前的晚上,雪已下得很大。醒来时,满地已铺了厚厚的一层雪, 雪还在下着。

这是我从我那第十层 楼见到的雪景

About two weeks ago, one day, the weather network said : “It is a major event !”

That’s right, there was a snowstorm warning in South East of Canada overnight. Toronto had 15cm snowfall and some places had up 40-60cm snowfall.

It was already snowing heavily the night before. When I woke up in the morning, everything was covered by think snow and it was still snowing.

This is the view I saw from my unit at the 10th floor。


Many cars could not move properly, and they drove in snail pace, around 10-20km/hour. It was common that cars stucked in the middle of the roads because of the snow. Sometimes, drivers had to come out from the car to push it to run again. Thankfully, the other drivers here were pretty understanding and patient.



We were quite excited by the snowstorm, quickly wrapped ourselves with layers and layers of clothing, went out to take some photos.


The snowstorm stopped the morning after, and the streets had been cleaned.

可是,我们家的窗都结冰了,开不到!! 没办法,这是在加拿大生活的一部份……

However, I could not open my windows because they were all frozen !! Well, this is part of life in the winter here….

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大年初一早上,我穿了一件红衣,对Ed父母说了一些好意头的话。 过年嘛!Ed父母给了一份红包。

他俩老人家去教堂。我和Ed跑去Caledon。 听说,这里的风景很美。尤其是在秋天枫叶转颜色时。

我没看到枫叶转色, 我看到冰结的瀑布(如下图)和湖泊。 另有一番风味。

中午时,Ed父母煮了港式年初一午餐 – 牛肉粥, 亲自做的萝卜糕,还有芒果年糕及红豆椰糕。



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Today, the weather forecast is :


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my first day



On 28th Dec 2006, it was my first day with snow on the ground. I woke up and saw everything was white. It was the first snowfall in Toronto this winter. Excited, I took this photo in front of Ed’s parents’ house.

I learnt something new too – Toronto drivers must keep an ice scraper in their cars to sweep the snow off the car’s window before they can go.



为了市民的安全及交通的顺畅,每天清晨,多伦多的市政府会派有个大铲子的卡车, 去清理主要街道的雪。可是,小街就没这个福份。人们要非常小心。滑倒及车祸容易发生。

A couples of weeks later, the snow is already no longer excites me as much, although it is still very pretty. And cold.

When the streets are covered, the city council will send trucks with a shovel in front to to clean most of the streets so the cars can get through without getting stuck. On a small residential street like this, we have to drive and walk very carefully. It can be extremely icy and slippery, for people and cars.

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昨天天气还好。有阳光。因气温还是零下,所以雪没溶。阳光照在雪上会很美丽。心血来潮下,跑去了The Beach

The Beach 是多伦多东西部较小的镇。离市中心约半小时的公共巴士车程。靠海岸,有个漂亮的沙滩。所以,名为The Beach。听说,主街里的一些商店蛮有意思。算是旅游胜地。夏天会人山人海。

我还没去过,因为听说冬天会很冷清。还以为今天的好天气会有些不同, 可是正如大家说的。我有些失望,也想念墨尔本的沙滩。



The weather was pretty mild with lovely sunshine two days ago. It seemed to me was a good day to visit The Beach.

The Beach is a smaller town located at the East West of Toronto. It is about half an hour bus ride from the Downtown. It has a beautiful beach, hence its name. There are some funky stores at the main street. It attracts lots of tourists and can be very busy during summer time.

I have not been there since I came because of nothing interesting in this cold winter. I thought the sun would bring more people there but I was wrong. It was quite quiet, even depressing there.

Walking to the bus stop to return home, whilst feeling disappointed and missing the beautiful beaches in Melbourne, I saw a group of children wearing colourful winter jackets walking across the whitish snow covered park with their teachers. This is a scene that I would never seen in Melbourne.

Winter is colourful in Toronto. I went home happily.

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