August 03, 2010

An Open Letter To New Zealand…

Dear New Zealand,

I like you, I really do, you’re beautiful and adventurous and laid back all at once, but I’ve got a bone to pick with you. For some reason you fail to build your houses in accordance with your weather. Winter exists in New Zealand. It gets cold here. There’s snow in the mountains and frost at sea level. The temperature routinely dips below 0°C at night. Given all of this information, why are the houses not insulated, windows single paned and not properly sealed and why can I see my breath while standing inside my apartment? The portable heaters that are strewn about the houses here and that suck every drop of moisture out of the air are not doing an adequate job of keeping me warm. Central heating is a wonderful invention, I urge you to look into it.

With love and wearing lots of layers,

When I first arrived to New Zealand it was summertime and I couldn’t believe the number of coffee shops that existed on every corner, but it all makes sense now, Kiwis need mass quantities of hot beverages in order to keep warm all winter. I’ve taken to drinking litres and litres of tea in the hope that if my insides are warm, my outside will be too. I also wear no less than four layers, including 2 polar fleeces, a scarf, fuzzy slippers and a blanket while inside my apartment. Inside. In addition to the tea, I’ve been making soup to help rid myself of the omnipresent cold. One of my favourites is butternut squash soup. You can almost just puree roasted butternut squash and eat it as a soup, but if you add things like chicken stock, onion, garlic, cumin, smokey paprika, salt and pepper and my favourite add in, coconut milk, it makes for a delicious soup that can help you forget, if only for a few minutes, about the cold.


Vicki said...

Didn't know you had moved - good luck in your new digs!

LyB said...

Now you're making me crave some soup! And it's far from being cold here... Hope you warm up soon!

kat said...

Lol, you have me thinking of a New Year's I spent in Northern England in a blizzard with no heat or hot water!

Zo said...

I feel your pain, sort of. We have a heat pump in the living room but due to the poor insulation, our power bill is $400 a month for the 4 of us, while in summer it is under $200.

There's actually a petition going around to introduce some basic standards for housing in New Zealand to ensure homes are live-able:

It'd be great if you could put your blog post in the text!

Elizabeth said...

Right now, it's hard to fathom being freezing and needing to eat a big bowl of soup because it's possible to eat soup and still wear mittens.

(My desk thermometer says 26.9C and I'm still reeling from last week when the desk thermometer hovered between 29C and 31C.)

By the way, that soup looks delicious.