It may seem early for this as “Autumn” is only just beginning, but as a veteran of living in a frozen wasteland I can tell you there are only two seasons up here – Winter and two weeks of Summer. So with that here are my tips for getting through they icy darkness.
1. Go to the famers market as often as you can to buy up the last of the seasonal produce. The vitamins will help you to stay healthy in the coming darkness and the taste will remind you of when you last felt warmth and happiness.
2. Remember to stay hydrated. That’s still important even when its cold outside and while its tempting to only drink coffee or tea in this weather the caffeine will just dehydrate you which is terribly bad for your skin.
3. Remind yourself that no, its OK, its only getting dark at five after all, you can handle that. Except that now its dark at four and then at three. Every time you get used to how much earlier it gets darker the earth pushes it back further like a cruel god, taunting you.
4. Lip balm will save your life. Metaphorically. The chocolate in your pocket might literally save your life if you end up buried in a snowstorm, but you live in the city so that won’t happen. Probably.
5. Remember that one year when the city was cut off by the snow and they had to send the army to come and dig us out though? Better stock up on dry goods and cat food just in case.
6. Sleep until seven. Which seven? Its dark outside but that could mean anything. You don’t feel rested but that doesn’t mean anything either. If its seven in the evening you’re probably fired but then again you’re a whole day closer to real sunlight so count that as a win.
7. Look at the pictures up on Facebook of your family on holiday without you. Look at how happy they are, basking in that precious golden source of vitamin D. Don’t mention this to your mother or she’ll remind you that you were invited too and its your own fault you’re a workaholic. Try and remember why career goals seemed so important to you now that you live in a permanent state of weird grey half-darkness unable to feel your toes. Don’t weep too much. Salt’s a dehydrating agent and that’s terribly bad for your skin.
8. Throw a summer themed party, even better if its hailing outside. When your friends have struggled in and taken off their snowsuits to change into the sun dresses and bikinis you mandated on the invites and the heating’s turned all the way up you’ll all feel much better. Ignore the looks they’re giving you. Everyone wants to be here. This is such a good idea.
9. A nice part of Winter is that you get to wear jumpers. Remember that Winter has nice parts. Like Christmas and hot chocolate! And jumpers! Big, soft, cuddly jumpers made from cashmere or wool. Cable knit or chunky crochet. Buy a jumper every time you leave the house. Cover yourself in jumpers. Everything will be alright.
10. Call your Norwegian friend and listen to him laugh at you. They have not seen sunlight for days, weeks, years. Decline his suggestion with growing horror that you move to Norway too and take over handling documents for his company. You long to see the day star again, you tell him, and hang up the phone to his mocking laughter. They are wise in Norway, they know the daystar comes when it will and it is not a merciful creature.
11. Buy a sunlamp in a desperate attempt to feel like life has meaning. It doesn’t.
12. Feel your hatred grow anytime someone in England whines about it being too hot. Hatred is power. Wait.