After record-breaking cold temperatures in December, the new year brought warmer weather. In terms of a Lithuanian winter, that means a change from -20 Celsius (0 Fahrenheit) to 0 Celsius (32 Fahrenheit). Now that might not seem warm to those of you living in milder climates, but a twenty to thirty degree rise in temps definitely feels warmer. I can put away the long underwear, wear my lighter-weight gloves and even go hatless.
But the respite from the frigid cold does have its disadvantages, especially for pedestrians. Daytime temps hover just above freezing which means melting snow — and melting snow means walking through slush puddles and on wet, slippery ice on the the sidewalks. It means getting splashed by cars as they drive through slush puddles. Finally, it means gray, dingy snow piles all around. I was going to take a photo of the sidewalk outside my Vilnius apartment, but the dirty snow is so depressing ugly that I decided to spare you the view.
The good news is that the warmer temperatures are supposed to continue through the weekend, which hopefully means the snow and ice will completely melt off the sidewalks. Worst case scenario — we get a deep freeze and all that slush turns into sheets of ice. If that happens, I’ll be prepared with my ice trekkers.