Growing up in the Pacific Northwest you get used to seasons. Lately, it has dawned on me how when there are not the “traditional” seasons it is difficult to know what time of year it is. Autumn’s trademark crisp mornings, warm days, cold nights do not exist here.
I also have worked a full week this week. I think it is the first time ever. Not that I celebrate Thanksgiving, but it is weird when you have had a four-day weekend every year for your entire life and suddenly don’t. Last night over a beer we saw CNN news about black friday. I forget what time of year it is. One of the only indications about the time of year is the seasonal Starbucks decorations. Christmas in Taiwan is a commercial holiday, but not popular other than a way for them to advertise sales at the mall. There is a sign at the mall downtown that says, “Xmas sale”. Other than that it is still 80 degrees most days, so my seasonal connection to the time of year comes from Starbucks red cups.
I didn’t realize how much I have come to rely on the weather to let me know what time of year it is. I had to laugh at myself this week when it rained a few days and the temperature low was 65. I literally put on leggings, boots, and my wool coat. Crazy right? 65 degrees is spring weather in Washington. Today it is supposed to be 79.
The local teachers keep telling me that it gets cold here. I wonder if 65 degrees is what they mean by cold. Apparently last winter it snowed for the first time in 50+ years. That being the case winter here I have been told lasts from about December – January. I am still waiting for the cold that they say comes with winter, but maybe the cold is the 65 degrees. I might be acclimating to the temperatures… I did put an extra blanket on the bed. But, the houses here are not built with heat, so that is saying something.
Don’t have any great winter photos yet, so I will leave you with the much-anticipated garbage truck video, think ice cream man, but for garbage… twice a day 6 days a week. I actually really enjoy this oddity of Taiwanese life. It makes garbage such a happy occasion.