Thursday, 30 August 2012

Northland, New Zealand Winter for Dummies- abridged

Winters in the Northland of New Zealand consist, at worst, of scattered chilly and rainy days reminiscent of midwest of US's early spring.  At very worst, there may be a stretch of several days of said weather a few times during the NZ winter.  Many of the photos I've posted are beautiful, sunny winter photos, so to be fair, I wanted to show you, in this video snippet, a bit of the blah.  And with that, I am not complaining that it is bad at all.

Temperatures indoors are more of the winter shock for me than the outdoor conditions.  Insulation and central heating are rarities because of the temperate climate, so if you attend a function in a cavernous old building, that is when you need to wear your heaviest winter gear.  How it happens I do not know, but the temperature indoors will chill to the bone, while outside it will feel uncharacteristically, er, not freezing.

A, my eight year old, has yet to wear a coat after fifteen New Zealand months.  In fact, shoes are a rarity. Crocs are the flavor most appealing because they can be thrown off easily.  As we walk to the bus stop, I no longer ramble on about how the commuters cruising through our great metropolis (pun) will be shocked that a cloaked and shod mom accompanies her bare legged, bare armed and bare foot son-- oh the scorn.

I joke with my Kiwi friends that they only wear cute coats and boots so they can vary their wardrobe, not for need of warmth.  Some chuckle and agree-- but some immigrants speak of acclimatizing after a couple of years and actually feeling more cold in the winter, which will be an experiment only involving me.  My husband has a gene strain that produces immunity to the cold.  I believe my husband and son will continue to wear the same attire all year long; they rarely wore coats in the (literally) freezing weather of the US.

Sunshine is the beauty of the New Zealand winters: when you get it, which is frequent, it will heat you to the bone and give your spirit a glow.


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  2. The first year in NZ I didn't feel much the cold, before I was living in Tokyo, before then in London and I come from North Italy, so Auckland didn't seem so cold at first... after a couples of winters here I am still happy with the temperature outside... but not indoors!!! I agree about the insulation, I live a bit south from you but still considered sub-tropical.... I wonder how can that be since in Winter we easily go down to 4 degrees and the only reason I don't get frost is becase I am a bit up in the hill sourronded by bush. I see frost in the valley, and at night it is cold, but mostly it is HUMID! People are starting to wake up now to the fact that houses need insulations and need to be dry and healthy, when I came here 15 ears ago if I complained about it everybody thought that I was just a wimp :-).