Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Still snowing - lets go see the hockey and the Polar bear!

It’s now getting towards the end of April and believe it or not it’s still winter!!
There has been a lot of news reports recently about the weather and so I will fill you in on what they are saying.....

The lowest ever average temperature for an April in Winnipeg is minus 1.6 degrees. This year the average temperature in April so far is minus 4.5 degrees. We have had 54% more snow than last winter and are expecting another snowfall in the next couple of days.  It is 184 days since the first snowfall on winter hit the city on October 19th. The latest date that there has still been a covering of snow on the ground was April 26th in 1997. It is likely, however that we may just fall short of that this hear as it is getting warmer day on day. Temperatures haven’t yet reached plus 5 degrees – When they do actually hit that mark, it will be the latest in 141 years that it has happened.

It is a record breaking year for the weather over here. I am glad to have seen it though as its unlikely that I will have to go through a winter like this anytime again soon. If I do have to though, then at least I will be used to it. I have quite enjoyed it and can happily sit and talk about going for a run in minus 47degrees and having frozen eyelashes. Not a lot of people have had so much fun!!

It has been a good winter for other things in Winnipeg too. The Winnipeg Jets are still holding onto their faint hopes of a play off place. We went to another game last week and the Jets pulled off another overtime win. I have never been to a sporting event where the crowd seemed so nervous and then went absolutely mental when the winning score went in. The game was tight with chances at both ends, but The Jets goalie – Ondrej Pavelec pulled off an amazing save before they finally won. A brilliant game and a great night out was followed on Saturday with an afternoon session in the pub right next door to the arena as the Jets played another game and took an important point. It was very cool to watch it live on TV from the building next door, if a little strange when the fans piled out between periods to the pub we were in to get some beers in and then return to the game. One minute they were stood next to us and the next we saw the same guys on TV!!

The weather turned bad on Sunday and the snow fell for most of the day and so we decided it was a good time to go to the Zoo and visit Winnipeg’s latest superstar – A Polar bear cub called Hudson – When I say cub, he is actually 7 feet tall when he stand on his hind legs and weighs a little over 200kg, so he aint small. It was a perfect day to see him as he loved the snow and there wasn’t very many other people visiting, so we had him all to ourselves and he obliged by playing in front of the fence right next to us.

Huge snow owl


Playing with Hudson the Polar bear

Buffter enjoying the snowy day
There is a wall inside the zoo where a few years ago, when she was just a 3 or 4 year old, Buffy and her brother Pat were part of a group of kids who left handprints on a wall. So we had a good look around and found their prints. Haahaa, she had such little hands!!

Tiny hands

We also saw Snow Owls, Snow Leopards, Tigers, Camels and a huge eagle. We saw a sign leading to the lions but couldn’t see anything of them when we went into the compound. Suddenly though we heard a roar and we noticed two huge Lions s sitting in the corner of their lazing area. They were only separated from us by some glass and so we could get right up eyeball to eyeball with them. They seemed genuinely interested in playing with us and we managed to get them chasing us a little as we jumped around behind the glass. At one point I was taken a little by surprise when one of them unexpectedly jumped at the glass and roared in my direction. Buffy laughed and then did exactly the same thing. It was a lot of fun and we could have spent all day playing with the huge cats, but we eventually left them to get some rest and we headed back out into the snow.

me, being a red panda....

red panda being me!!

we got quite close

they were a bit tired

Buffy getting close.....

and closer still
All in all it was a great weekend and continued today with a good 9 mile run this morning and then United won against Villa this afternoon to take the premiership crown. This evening The Jets had another must win game –which they won 2-1. Tomorrow they play the Washington Capitals and if they can get a win, they have a really good chance of the play offs. It’s going to be another good night I hope!! 

Hudson the polar bear

Buffy gets eaten by a lion.

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