“Look! It’s snowing, it’s snowing!!!”, I remember screeching over-excitedly in November, when the first flakes of snow began falling in Berlin.
“Huh? That’s not snow…” scoffed my worldly-wise class of 6 year-olds.
Sure as hell looked like snow to me: white, fluffy, gently dusting the pavement and then melting within an hour. That’s how snow behaves.
In Berlin it doesn’t snow, it SNOWS. Since the last week of December we have had literally constant ground coverage of snow. It’s inches thick, and on the pavements it’s so compacted that its like thick glass: slippy, solid and seemingly immovable. Every couple of days it snows again, the temperature oscillating between minus 1 and minus 10. In this way the snow slightly melts then rapidly refreezes, which makes it deadly slippery and so thick that I can’t imagine it going of its own accord – surely we’re talking pneumatic drills and a heat wave before Berlin re-emerges from beneath this mini-glacier.
Although Germans I know tell me this year is an aberation I don’t really believe them- I think it’s secretly like this every year and they’re trying to trick me into believing next year will be less Narnian.
Getting about is pretty challenging- falling over is common, and seemingly the best form of propulsion is the controlled slide. If however you are very very drunk, it does mean you can lie down in the snow and force your friend to drag you along the pavement on your back. I’m not saying you should, but you can.
On the other up-side it’s totally snow-man weather. The snow’s extremely sticky and tough from lying there and melting and re-freezing for two months, so you can really branch out on the snow-man construction.
I’m fairly patient with bad weather, being as I am Scottish, but I and every other inhabitant of Berlin have pretty much had enough now.
I think it’s nearly holiday time…