Bitter

1:35 am. It's Elaine's shift to stoke the fire, but I woke up anyhow. -28.1° outside. Cold. Bitter cold. I'm trying to remember one day in high school…I went skiing at Sugarbush…I think it was -20° F. It was one run and done. But this is a solid eight degrees colder than that. Twenty-eight degrees below zero, which I normally consider abnormally cold. And then 32° from that to the freezing point. A solid sixty degrees of freezing temperatures…deep, deep in the hole of winter. My shift to stoke the fire is at 3:15 am, and it will be necessary, as once the thing goes out, it drops inside scary fast. At one point today, Elaine had it at 76° in, -26° out. A solid 101° difference. But then now…it's in the fifties inside and the cold is attacking. You can feel it, through every weakness in the caboose, oozing in.

I went skiing this (or yesterday) morning. Minus-twelve. Bundled up heavy, but I actually needed to shed a layer on the skin up. But the hands and feet…they didn't warm up. Found this out walking around town afterwards, keeled over from the pain of the blood rushing back into them. Skis were slow today – as in not moving on flatter slopes. Everything, deliberate, almost alien.

I want to head out it in this morning. And I don't. Want to for the novelty…what exactly does -30° feel like? I want that knowledge for reference sake. But then, it scares me. I got hand and toe warmers, but will they be enough? We'll see if I even get out of bed.

It's cold. Cold as I've ever witnessed in Colorado.

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