It is about this time of the year when it seems like winter feels very well in Alaska and intends to stay forever. That is when everyone starts complaining that they feel sick from bundling up wearing the same winter clothes over and over again, and are eager to wear shorts and tanks and can’t wait to wear flip flops again. At least those fellow Alaskans, who were not lucky enough to build some vitamin D at the beaches of Mexico or Hawaii over the holiday break. Well, I have never been to either of them in my now 12+ years of living in Alaska.
Those who had not been out face their vitamin D minimum around March. I had been down in California before the holidays for a work related conference in San Francisco. Temperatures were in the lower 50s, i.e. pleasant for an Alaskan. I went out for lunch with a British-French colleague from Paris. When we had gotten our meals and where looking for a table I suggested taking the table outside. The weather was so nice and I thought it would be good for my vitamin D formation. She gave me a look as if I were crazy. Well thus we stayed inside and I kept taking my vitamin D supplements. Alaskans are used to stay inside, in winter because it is cold, in summer because of the mosquitoes. The salad was very fresh (you never get it this fresh in Alaska in winter), and the science conversation was great too. Thus, it was only a wasted vitamin D fueling opportunity.
Many women start integrating summer items in their layers around this time of the year. The outfit above sort of reflects a typical outfit created using also “summer items.” Temperatures were around -20F (-28.8C). I am wearing my leather shorts, a plaid shirt under a cashmere long-sleeve V-neck sweater, which is under a white denim jacket. To not freeze to hypothermia I wore tights and flannel lined tights under the shorts.
I topped my “indoor outfit” with my long shearling coat and a wide huge wool scarf wrapped around the coat. Final finishes as usual gloves, shearling boots and hat. When it is this cold I use to have an extra pair of shearling mitten in my bag that I use on top of the gloves when I get into the cold car after work. You cannot imagine how ugly cold the steering wheel is and the fingers lose their warmth fast despite of silk or cashmere leather lined gloves.
Photos: Gerhard Kramm (2014)
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