Cold weather everywhere


 Jan 10, 2010 |  Written by Anupa Mueller

My mom and sister in India have been complaining bitterly about the cold this year.  Although Darjeeling (where my sister is) is known for its cold weather, it hardly translates to a chilly 40 degrees every night.  Traditionally, days are in the high 60's or even 70's with bright sunshine and the nights are in the 50's.  This year, it has already snowed in Darjeeling town and it has been in the low 40's every single night.  Now you may consider this balmy compared to what we're going through but remember - they have no central heat and no ready running hot water.  Most houses have individual geysers in each bathroom and you switch them on and off to keep the water hot.  Now add to this power shortages resulting in a lack of electricity and you have yourselves one doozy of a winter.  You can check the weather here and compare your plight to theirs. We take it all for granted - snow boots, insulated layers, fleece jackets, gloves of all kinds, hats to suit every mood.  They don't have anything like the variety we have and small space heaters are the norm.  In Ranchi, where my mom is, houses are large and airy, with verandahs, courtyards and a lot of stone.  When houses become cold, they stay cold.  If there's no electricity, no heat.  So for everyone who is complaining this winter, put it in perspective.  When I hear of an apartment building or town here without heat, I sincerely feel their pain.  I've been there.

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