Wednesday, June 29, 2011

How to Survive Winter in Masealama

Two things will get you, the dark and the wind. Although indoors provides you with shelter from the wind, the thick stone walls and little sunlight penetration create conditions very similar to your freezer. There is no central heating and air as we are used to the USA, so,

1) Try to find a spot in the sun still protected from the wind. Watch out for lizards and other reptiles which tend to gather in such areas.

2) Wear knit tights under you pants. Layers do wonders.

3) Wear a towel or blanket. Especially if you are a gogo (grandma), you can get away with wrapping yourself up in a towel or blanket to stay warm in public, and it is perfectly acceptable

4) If indoors, old wood burning stoves work miracles at warming up a room. If no wood stove, baking also tends to warm things up, not to mention making things smell heavenly.

5) Drink warm water. You can only have so much tea in one day, but you can stay hydrated and warm at the same time without an overload of sugar. Warms you hands as you hold it and your body from the inside out as you drink it.

6) Invest in a heater to sit in front of. Bar heaters may not warm up a room, but they can burn the hair off you legs if you are close enough!

7) Tuck your PJs into thick socks, thus when you crawl into bed your pants don’t roll up and result in cold, bare skin.

8) And hour before bed, boil water and put in an empty 2 litre. Wrap in a towel and place between your sheets. This eliminates the inevitable cold sheets that you first crawl into at night. Beware- hot water put into a cold glass bottle can result in explosion!

9) 6 inches of blankets covering your entire body, head included, seems to do the trick. The famous fuzzy, heavy South African blankets work miracles.

10) Exercise and bathe often- these are the only two things that ensure warmth, if only temporary!

~Heather Anne Nelson

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