Many of you know that I spent last winter traveling between Chicago where I live and Calgary, Canada where I was on assignment for work. And anyone who has been reading my blog over the past few months knows that I spent April through August in Brazil, also for work. This meant of course that I went from winter in Calgary to winter in Brazil (don’t laugh it does actually get cold there).

Now here is the kicker, only a few short days after returning from Brazil I was headed back to Calgary for another assignment that would once again last though the winter. I was beginning to wonder who I had ticked off to seal such a fate.

Then again, maybe things weren’t that bad.

Despite that fact that it can get down to -30C in Calgary, having been raised in Wisconsin, and now living in Chicago I was familiar with cold and I have the right clothes and accessories to survive it, including my floor length down jacket that one of my co-workers refers to as my sleeping bag. And, winter does have a number of great sporting options two of which (curling and bob-sledding) I ran out of time before trying last year and one (snow boarding) that I tried and want to get better at. Not to mention skating which I actually know how to do having played hockey for a number of years.

And there is the location, the foothills of the Canadian Rockies, a most fantastic place, with Banff only a little more than an hour away by car, and plenty of other mountain attractions (Canmore and Three Sisters) even closer. Plus I had wanted to try to get to the Burgess Shale last year and also ran out of time.

Sadly, due to having been in Brazil for four months I have not been able to spend a weekend in Calgary yet as I have many domestic things that I put off that I must now attend to.

So while there was quite a sense of déjà-vu as I moved into an apartment across the hall (read mirror image) of one I had been in for part of the time last year and as I visited three stomping ground places within the first week (Basil, Nandos, Buchanans) there was also a sense of “did I really go to Brazil or was that all just an amazing dream.”

Speaking of Brazil, I know that I mentioned this in some of my blog posts when I was there, but yes, Virginia, they do have a winter, at least in Porto Alegre. And while you might not consider an overnight low of 0C very cold, consider that said low is accompanied by buildings with tile floors and without central heating. Also consider that POA is quite humid, so a chill can get into your bones that can be quite hard to shake.

Of course here again, the weather did not prohibit me from having a wonderful time as those of you know who followed this blog while I was there. Remember, I didn’t want to come home when I did, and that was before I knew that I was heading back to Canada.

Wendy

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