I have discovered that the coldest place in the universe is not Ballarat as I once thought, but is in fact my new place on a winter’s morning. Heating is something you never quite appreciate when it’s good… until it’s gone.

At my old place, due to a design fault, the downstairs neighbours had central heating in their ceiling, which meant for much of the time, my place was nicely heated for free. When the neighbours moved out, suddenly the non-carpeted bits of the floor were cold, and stuff hung on the clothes horses took twice as long to dry.

And so to the new place… and a switch from brick to weatherboard. And ooh, does it get cold in the winter? Damn yes. Sometimes I can see my own breath in the bathroom. Last night I put two hot water bottles in the bed before I went to sleep – one to warm the spot for my feet, another to warm up the pillow. This morning the incentive to just stay in bed was strong enough that I was at risk of not going to work. And when I did eventually get out of bed, the kitchen was so cold that reaching into the fridge to get the milk, it didn’t feel cold.

Thankfully the gas heater in the livingroom pumps out a fair amount of heat, even on the lower settings – enough to make that room toasty warm within a couple of minutes of being turned on, and indeed to melt away any icicles in that half of the house. Of course it remains to be seen what affect this will have on my gas bill – but that means I’d better not stay in bed all day – at least not on work days.

I have another heater, a portable electric one, and I suspect that in the coming days I will go shopping for one or two more. And I may have to do something about the flimsy blinds and the rather pathetic level of insulation they provide.

Having conquered the cold by way of a lovely steaming hot morning shower, I eventually I made it into work. I knew it must be Monday morning when one of the servers at work asked me this:

[Windows dialogue box]

I thought about it for a while. Was it a cry for help? Was it the computer questioning its very existence? Or a comment on the nothingness of morality in today’s society?

Eventually I said… Yes. I must be a "cup half full" kind of person.

By Daniel Bowen

Transport blogger / campaigner and spokesperson for the Public Transport Users Association / professional geek.
Bunurong land, Melbourne, Australia.
Opinions on this blog are all mine.