It is very cold outside right now. It's the middle of the damn day and it's only -8° Celsius (18° Fahrenheit for those of you in Rio Linda). Plus it's windy. And when it's that cold and this windy, the chilly air has a way of finding whatever crack you have in your abode and sneaking in.
And that means it's time to break out the Homer feet. I am from Orange County, California, where we never have weather this, and the one thing I can't stand is having cold feet. So while this may look ridiculous, I am now comfortable again.
From the Weather Channel's site (I can't get their icons to copy):
18°F ... Feels Like 5°F
Updated Dec 17 12:00 p.m. Local Time
Yikes! I'm not going outside today.
I did go out that day. That night, in fact. I had to drive someone home, so I got into the Kia and warmed it up for what was probably too short a time (ten seconds maybe?) and the car started to sputter around Namsan Ring Road. In fact, the engine turned off right in the middle of the road, but I had already gotten into the right lane by then and had my hazards on. I cranked it and it just wouldn't start.
The vehicle is LPG (liquefied petroleum gas, known as "LP Gas" in California), and I must admit I had forgotten to let the remaining gas in the fuel line burn off before turning off the car, as your supposed to do in very cold weather. If it's completely frozen, the car won't start at all, but if it's just a little clogged, it will turn off and you have to re-start it and keep it revved (this has happened before). After about ten minutes of driving, the car's fuel line is normal.
But the battery was obviously not giving enough juice to turn it over, so I called my insurance company to have them send out (for free! I love Korea's service-oriented corporate mindset) a car to give me a jump (they also fix flats and do other minor things for free). The guy came, gave me a jump, and then checked my battery and said I had better change it. I followed him to his shop (it was 11 p.m. at this point) and he changed the battery. There was a noticeable difference over how long it had been taking to start the car. Finally, I was on my way.
But during that period where I was waiting, what a nightmare! It was -11° C according to the "out side temperature" reading my car has on the temperature control panel. That's 12° Fahrenheit. And I didn't have the car on to get heat. Nor was I properly dressed for being out in such cold, since I thought I wouldn't be outdoors any longer than it took to go from my apartment door to my car and back.
I had left my Homer feet back at the house.
No gloves, no long-johns, no thick sweater. I had a ski jacket on, but my lower legs were cold and the only way to keep my hands from going numb was by sitting on them. I was a little nervous about putting my hands inside my pants to keep them warm because (a) I was still sitting in traffic and I might have to jump out of car at a split second's notice, and (b) I was close enough to the sidewalk that passers-by might wonder what I was doing parked along the side of the road with my hands in my pants. I was also parked close to one of those ROK Marine membership halls, and I'd hate to incur the wrath of a ROK marine whose girlfriend just came up to him and told him I had my hands in my pants while she was walking by my car.
Anyway, I'm glad to be back home, sitting on the toasty ondol floor, because right now it's...
16°F ... Feels Like 3°F
Updated Dec 18 12:00 p.m. Local Time
Plus, there have been snow flurries all morning.
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