fire

Something strange has happened to me very quickly since moving to America. I can no longer tolerate the cold. In one year, I have become one of those wimps who starts shivering and puts on a sweater when it gets under 70 degrees Fahrenheit … that’s 20 degrees for you Canadians. On the flip side, however, I can happily endure a weeks-long heatwave with just ceiling fans. I barely turned the AC on all summer and instead lolled around in 100-degree temperatures feeling like Blanche Dubois, negligees, gin and tonics and the odd popsicle keeping me cool.

And now Blanche is wearing eight layers of fleece and plans not to move her ass away from the big brick fireplace in her living room until the next heatwave comes along.

Tomorrow it is supposed to get cold here, and by cold, I mean the brutally frigid temperature of 45 degrees — that’s about eight degrees for the Canucks.

I have been lighting fires since I got a few pieces of firewood yesterday, but I am fretting because the terrible cold is approaching and I need more. So when I walk Dolly through the foresty parks and streets here, I have been gathering small sticks and branches. Tomorrow, I am ordering a whole cord of firewood to be delivered to the house and I swear I will rarely leave this couch over the next six months. Surely to God I won’t be expected to brave anything close to freezing, will I? What do you think I am? CANADIAN?

I can’t express how happy it makes me to have a wood-burning fireplace. My last rental had only gas fireplaces, and those are like fake hooters, if you ask me. Insultingly fraudulent. The last time I lived anywhere with a wood-burning fireplace was my childhood home, so I couldn’t be more thrilled.

And it’s just what I need, by the way — another reason to park my ass on the couch. At least now I have a lazy hound dog who will be joining me, an equally shivery teenaged boy and two warmth-addicted house cats.

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