So, the very cold weather lasted about a week. The whole of Russia was colder than normal, and please remember that Russia is very very big. Apparently more energy was consumed in the last week than any other in Russian history. I know several people who went without electricity for 24 hours or more. Fortunately, most heating is gas.

I never got too cold, though. Mostly I was way too paranoid to get cold. For several days, whenever I went outside I was dressed in the following: tights, long underwear, knee socks, lined wool trousers, long underwear top, button-down shirt, wool turtleneck sweater, knee-length parka with hood up, hat, scarf, two pairs of gloves, and boots. Even then I can’t say I was toasty warm, but I was OK.

Now we’re back to more seasonable temperatures, but the supercold had some advantages:
1. Everything was dry, so all that slop on the sidewalks and streets was gone or frozen up.
2. People stayed home, so the streets were empty and the metro wasn’t crowded and it was kind of peaceful.
3. School was cancelled for several days (kindergarten wasn’t, but regular school) and so I didn’t have to teach the horrible eight-year-olds on Monday.
4. Excuse to stay indoors and sleep most of the weekend, which is, sadly, what I like to do best these days. Blame an exhausting job and the lack of sunlight.

They say this is only a brief reprieve from the frigidness, but we’ll see. In any case, now I know I can survive.

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