Rain yes rain
We all know what this means, but I must admit coming from the cape in South Africa, rain has not been a common thing over the past few years.
Well believe it or not, nor has it been in this part of China either, in the dry arid landscape of the cold North West.
The winter is on the way out, but there are still freezing cold howling winds pushing this mass of cold air across the mountainous area at great speed. Every other day you get a splattering of snow. This is all ok; one can handle this and dress to deal with it. The only problem is when you feel you are managing to deal with it, in comes the worst possible scenario – rain and lots of it.
I can handle most things and rain is one of them, but when this comes with howling winds at Zero degrees, I am sorry, it is almost impossible to deal with.
We looked at the weather forecast in the morning, it was not looking good. Rain was predicted all day. The big issue was that by midday the wind would pick up to gusts of 50 KM per hour with a wind chill factor of – 17. We put on as many layers of clothing as possible and some extra in our back pack. The last layer that we had was a Gore-Tex outer rain coat and hit the road.
Slowly the cold finds its way in between the layers of clothing.
Normally the first to go are the hands, as they lose feeling and mobility. The wet gloves just get colder and colder with the hand movement when running. Then the cold goes down your neck as the unrelenting rain finds ways to penetrate the seams of your clothing. Your cheeks are numb, lips blue and nose just runs. Head down you just push on to keep generating heat. Your feet are wet and useless, they are so cold and numb it feels like you are running with two blocks of cement as feet.
The first gust of cold wind hits you; takes your breath away as the temperature plummets with it, the gust turns into a constant blast of chilled air that now drives the rain into every crevice between your clothing.
You drop your head, crouch the body to protect yourself from the wind and trundle on, the only thing that I can now default to is, it’s just another 5 minutes, it’s just another 5 minutes…