Tag Archives: ice

Canada & Winter – An unnecessary dichotomy.

To many new Canadians, seeing their first winter ever is a miracle to behold, it is a treasure. Appreciation is never higher then from those who need it most…

For farmers, winter is a blanket, a source of renewal and health and a fickle friend that can give and take away, just like any season.

Winter renews the groundwater, provides fresh life into our waterways and keeps the flow strong well into the spring. It helps keep pests in check, and directly sustains the lives of thousands of northern plants and animals – whether it be using the sea ice to hunt, cold waters to live or permafrost to grow within.

FWinter is a treasure, a rare, special season.or nature, winter is a precious gift. One of four equally valuable seasons in a cycle of life and death, preservation and consumption…All species in Canada depend on winter to some extent, it helps maintain balance both between species and between seasons.

Winter is ultimately the reason our country holds such a vast quantity of water – nearly all our lakes, ponds and wetlands can be traced to one of the grandest displays of winter in history – the ice age!

And yet…we are so disconnected today. Why does nearly everyone complain about winter? We try so hard to avoid it, salt it, not touch it, wish for it in the summer yet bemoan when it arrives. Even our forced connection to winter is unstable…we forget to use winter tires, wear fashionable clothes that don’t even insulate, pretty boats that make us slip and shovel our driveways all hunched over (bend with your knees!)!

What has happened to all the community, outdoor recreation and winter fun that we used to enjoy? We take advantage of what winter provides and sadly, very soon, it will just as easily be taken away.

We are losing winter, so much more than just a season.

Take a minute to appreciate that wonderful state of water falling outside – you should hope it keeps falling, because winter is not what is used to be, and it may not stick around much longer. As with the disruption of all other parts of our climate system, winter is becoming an increasing luxury – and should be treated as such: protected, preserved, enjoyed and understood.

Turn that indoor fear into some outdoor joy.

Go out and experience winter, here for a limited time. Thanks.

Going with the flow: ~South Korea liquified~

On to the next post based on my favorite elemental series, here I will look at the wonderful world of water, and what it seems to represent in Seoul and South Korea…

The city of Seoul is as malleable and remarkable just like this very element and its unique variety too! As you move through the city you can always find something to fit your needs and suit your interests, regardless of the fact you are surrounded by fairly little ethnic diversity. Just like the continuity of water, this Korean society supports and engages (mostly) rather than isolates, it all depends on how much you reciprocate and try to engage back!

So what does the element speak to exactly?
“Water is the element of change…The fighting style of Waterbending is mostly flowing and graceful, acting in concert with the environment. Waterbenders deal with the flow of energy; they let their defense become their offense, turning their opponents’ own forces against them.”

And so, seeing the ebb and flow of water here in Seoul (and lack thereof) I have had much to appreciate and reflect on…literally. Considering how crucial this substance is to our lives, we often apply little value or thought to its daily use in our modern society. Change can be good but in our current situation, it has come at a heavy cost – an increased appreciation for artificial values, short-term gain and easier lifestyles at the expense of a ever-deteriorating natural environment. Just as quickly as we came to rule this planet, we have fallen victim to our own strategies and ambitions. Drought and floods appear faster than we can predict them; even here in Seoul I bear witness to vast rivers running empty for months, cracked barren soils and calcified reservoir walls. Though we expect the climate to work out itself and solve these issues, it is not that easy – it takes two to tango and managing our resources is no different, though lets replace “dance” with “cooperate” and “balance”. Like water, lets try and move with the flow – nature that is – and reconsider the embedded value in ecology, long-term thinking and difficult solutions that support far more than just a generation.

Change can be good, lets use the energy we have to become great!