Cold is a far greater threat to survival than it appears. It decreases your ability to think and weakens your will to do anything except to get warm. Cold is an insidious enemy; as it numbs the mind and body, it subdues the will to survive. Cold makes it very easy to forget your ultimate goal–to survive. – http://www.firstaidneeds.com/survivalch15pg38
It is seventeen degrees celcius here in Edwardsville, and my room mate has the fan on. Like him, I’m also not wearing a shirt as I lay on the bed, but only because somehow I am still able to cope with this weather. In his own case, it is because he feels hot. “Are you kidding me? You feel hot in this temperature?” I asked in part amazement and part dread. “No,” he responded, “this is not cold at all. Cold begins in November.”
I’ve had this conversation a lot of times since I arrived here, and all of them usually ends with a warning that I should be both mentally and physically prepared to endure three gruelling months of subzero cold, I mean below zero degrees! My physical preparation must have to do with fleshening up by eating as much fat foods as possible. The second is buying all appropriate clothings. Just today, I bought a thick woolen jacket at a strip mall in town. They didn’t have any gloves, hats, mufflers and boots for me or I would have bought those too. In any case, I still have a few more weeks more before it becomes impossible to go out in a simple jeans and t-shirt. With fattening up, I seem to have little problem, thanks to cheese burgers and cheese pizzas. But then, the conversations eventually gets scarier when people start to describe what it is really like to be in a temperature at freezing point.
I am a warm-blooded animal and I have never lived in anywhere below 12degrees, and that is why it gets scary. Maybe I’ll just pack my bags and flee to Ibadan when it gets to a point when hot coffee and aboniki rub fail to lift my spirit and I can’t take it anymore. I think about it for a while and then change my mind. Maybe it’s not so bad. And then I look into the freezer and think about what it must be like to sleep in one of those. I am optimistic, but I still don’t know what I’ll do when December comes, then January, and the coldest one of them, February. Whatever shall I do? How would I survive?