Tag: winter

Harbin preparation

Harbin preparation

Yesterday we got back from a weekend in Harbin to see the Ice and Snow Festival. The pictures I had seen made it look like a really cool experience, so it was another to do on our long travel list. We booked a group tour through a German travel agency in Shanghai. My thinking was: A bit of German efficiency and having a warm bus waiting really can’t hurt in the winter.

After watching the weather forecast I was a bit terrified:

The average temperature we had was around -25 degrees. The high during the day was -20 and the lowest -30 at night. That’s definitely be the coldest I’ve ever experienced.

Of course I am a well prepared German and used Christmas to stock up on stuff to keep me warm. Here is what I packed for 2 days:

  • 2 sets of long ski underwear
  • 1 sweater
  • 2 fleeces (with hood)
  • 1 light down jacket (with hood)
  • 1 winter coat (with hood)
  • 1 pair fleece pants
  • 1 pair of insulated snow/ski pants
  • 1 pair of liner gloves
  • 1 pair of thick snow gloves
  • 1 hat
  • 1 scarf
  • 2 pairs of knee high ski socks
  • 2 pairs of thick wool socks
  • 1 pair of snow/winter boots
  • 2 pollution face masks
  • 1 full face mask
  • Warming insoles to stick onto socks
  • Portable hand warmers

With all of that I wore 5 layers on top (undershirt, sweater, fleece, light down jacket, winter jacket) and 3 on the bottom (long underwear, fleece pants, snow pants). Thorben had similar layers, so we looked like this the whole time:

The MVP of the trip were definitely the self warming insoles you can stick onto your socks. I had them on each day for over 9 hours and they were still warm when I removed them. My feet were always the warmest part and never got cold. Same with my head, but that was probably due to the 4-5 layers I had on 🙂 Overall we didn’t get too cold and also no frostbites, so if I ever go back to temperatures like this- same packing list.

Pictures of the trip will follow as soon as Thorben uploads and sorts through them. It was just too cold to take off the gloves and take pictures with our phones.

 

Shanghai winter

Shanghai winter

Even though it’s strawberry season it’s also winter in Shanghai. Here is what my weather app shows at the moment and judging by the comments from my coworkers this is as cold as it gets. Next week will be the second time we’ll have sub-zero temperatures at night. But whenever that happens, or really whenever it’s below 10, everyone complains about how freezing it is.

Last night and this morning it even snowed a bit, which is pretty rare for Shanghai. Here are some pictures of the “Winter Wonderland” taken from our apartment and the office window.

Though the temperatures make it look like Shanghai has mild winters it actually does feel really cold. One thing is the humidity which makes it seem much colder than it. Also, Shanghai is south of the north-south divide for central heating. Apparently, the heating line runs along the Huai River and Qin Mountains, so Shanghai doesn’t make the cut. We are lucky that floor heating was installed in our apartment before we moved in so at least at home it’s pretty comfortable. However, most places in Shanghai don’t have heating and the only way to make it warm is using the air conditioner. That includes our office. Hello, cold toes.

At least I have an excuse for my favorite winter activities: Staying home, cuddling up with my heated blanket and watching Grey’s Anatomy while eating all the Christmas candy 🙂

Update by Thorben:

Everyone was very excited about the snow. Our colleagues from corporate research tried to build a snowman this morning. This afternoon we showed them how it is done.