My first Winter in Canada is bittersweet, there are good days and there are bad days. For someone who is from a tropical country with a weather that doesn’t go down below 27 degree on normal days; experiencing the opposite is a really big challenge. I knew its not gonna be easy, and unlike other people who are very excited to see snow, I am the one who is very reluctant even from the start. This is the season where I felt the saddest. I didn’t believe it at first when they told me that people get depressed during winter because who would be depressed when all you see is white, right? It’s far from being a sad triggering color. But, just like what they said, wait until you try it yourself. The transition is rough, thus, I get too emotional from spending atleast 5-10 minutes just to put on my winter gear (e.g. coat, boots, gloves, bonnet and scarf) and removing them, walking on icy path with your heavy boots, shivering inside while feeling your hand getting stiff. Too many things to hate because the negative outweighs the positive. Then gradually I stopped hating winter because I knew that it is inevitable so I started adapting and started getting used to the feeling that it slowly become normal, that slowly I started getting the hang of it.
As what Vivian Greene said, “Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass… It’s about learning to dance in the rain.” I took this leap of faith so I might as well stand on my own feet while keeping my sanity intact. I started reading about Montreal’s winter activities and made sure that I have time for enjoyment.
So join me as I look back on my first Canadian Winter experience.
I remembered it crystal clear, the date of the first snow fall, it was November 20, 2016. It was almost midnight, I was looking outside our window thinking how am I gonna go to work the next day; as if the snow would immobilise me. I prepared my winter clothes the night before, feeling anxious as if I’m gonna be slaughtered the next day. Lol.
This was how it looked like outside, the day after the first snow fall. I thought it was bad, not thinking I would see worse on the coming days.
And this is how I looked like that day. I look like a new born baby wrapped perfectly to maintain normal body temperature.
Le Grand Marche de Noel de Montreal
Just before Christmas, Montreal have this great Christmas Market in Place des Arts where they turn streets into a fabulous outdoor illuminated village. This runs every December 2 to 24, which gave us time to procastinate if we will go this week or the following week.
It was one fine Sunday, first sign of snow has just melted and sun was out so me and my roomates (AJ and Claire) decided to visit Le Grand Marche de Noel for the firt time. This place is ideal for families with small kids because there are giant sculptures of magical toys and animals, fires that crackle, and a little train for children. I, on the other hand may not be a child but felt like a child that day.
Posed in front of the Traditional wooden store and there are a lot of them like this here, but I liked this one the most coz it’s red.
When Santa is away, little kids play. AJ and me inside the house of Santa Claus and the Santa Claus office.
(Outfit Details: H&M bonnet and boots, Ivanka Trump coat, Forever 21 Cardigan, Light in a box leggings, Sfera backpack)
Christmas Day in Old Port
My first Christmas in Montreal is very memorable, I may not have my family with me but I celebrated it with people who are very close to me, my roommates AJ and Claire and my 2 other friends Caryl and Olive. On Christmas day we decided to visit Old Port for a stroll and try ice skating.
So the plan was for us all to go ice skating, but it turned out that only me and Caryl are the ones interested.
I’ve always wanted to learn how to ice skate just like how badly I want to learn how to play the piano. I tried to play the piano at this age but my fingers are not in tuned, same as how my legs are not in coordination when I am wearing ice skating shoes. It took me a lot of effort trying to learn how to skate but stopped eventually because I really don’t have the balance, partly because I am scare to fall most of the time. Great that I tried it, but definitely my first and last try of ice skating.
These girls right here are the sisters I never had. Felt so blessed because I have them.
Ended Christmas day with a visit to the church in St. Joseph. My life in Canada may be challenging but I still have so many things to be thankful for. I am still blessed in many ways.
(Outfit Details: H&M bonnet, Point Zero coat, Zighilli scarf, Forever 21 leggings, Aigle boots, Sfera backpack)
La Fete Des Neiges
La Fete Des Neiges means Festival of Snow. Every late January to early February, Montreal’s Parc Jean-Drapeau turns into a winter wonderland, a childhood delight that features activities for kids as well as for adults. So me and my child-like friends, Olive and Ronna went there on the last day of the event.
Behind me is the Biosphere, it is an Environment Museum. Based on my research this architectural masterpiece was designed by noted American architect Buckminster Fuller.
There are a lot of activities to try during La Fete Des Nieges such as tubing, sliding, skating, snowshoeing and zip lining, but we did not try any of it because the line is insanely long. So all we did is to have our photos taken with furry animal friends.
(Photo Credit to Patrick Uy)
Before we went home, we dropped by the Montreal Olympic Stadium for a short photo op with this iconic landmark.
(Outfit Details: H&M bonnet and scarf, Ivanka Trump coat, Jag jeans, Aigle boots, Sfera backpack)
St. Patrick’s Day Parade
My last winter activity is the St. Patrick’s Day Parade.
“Montréal’s St Patrick’s Parade is famous all over the world and widely considered one of the best. It is the highlight of the Irish Festival with all of Montréal’s Irish organizations taking part. The first parade was held in 1824 and has transformed into an event that all Montréaler’s look forward to regardless of their background. It uniquely celebrates not only all things Irish but all the communities that make up Montréal. After a very long winter it signals to all that spring has finally come.”
Now we know! It was truly fun and festive. I enjoyed different floats and costumes of the people during the parade. Photos below are some of my favorites.
(Outfit Details: Forever 21 scarf, Ivanka Trump coat, Sfera backpack)
Before winter finally ended, we were surprised by the sudden snow storm. My idea of snow storm is the same with the snow storms that I see on TV where people are being blown away by the strong wind and big snow flakes. In reality, there was no exaggerated wind, it just snowed the whole 3 days and when you step on snowy path, it reaches your knees and worse mid-thigh.
It is officially Spring here in Canada, and I am more than ready to start this season feeling happier and lighter. Until next Winter Canada!