Ottawa By Night

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It’s mid-February now, and even though winter is far from being over, the days are slowly getting longer. Just a month ago, it was pitch dark by the time I left work, at 5 pm. Now, I can actually watch the sunset in the bus (provided I don’t miss it…).

I could say the worst part of the winter is behind us but I don’t want to jinx it. We haven’t had much snow this year but for a couple of snowstorms back in December. But it could very well snow until March/ April and temperatures are still well below zero, averaging -15C.

Most immigrants think their first winter in Canada is the hardest because they are not used to it. But I disagree. Sure, there is the initial “fucking cold, eh” factor. But for most, the first winter is quite fun because snowstorms, blizzards, ice rain and all the weird “only in Canada” weather phenomenons are actually exciting to experience. The second winter is even better, because by then, you are actually able to deal with more extreme weather conditions and appreciate all the perks of the winter.

After that, it pretty much goes downhill. You know how long winter will be. You know that the first snow is beautiful, but that the five centimeters that fell on your grass one morning in November won’t melt till May. You know that days will be short, that starting the car in the morning will take ages and that you will wear layers and layers of clothes for the next few months. Mentally, it’s hard. The Canadian winter gets to you after a while.

The East Block of the Parliament

The East Block of the Parliament

The Parliament Library

The Parliament Library

Side Parliament Entrance

Side Parliament Entrance

War Memorial

War Memorial

Château Laurier

Château Laurier

Night Traffic

Night Traffic

Old Train Station

Old Train Station

The Canal and Downtown

The Canal and Downtown

Snowy Bench and Crane

Snowy Bench and Crane

Business District

Business District

Job Half Done

Job Half Done

Construction

Construction

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About Author

French woman in English Canada. World citizen, new mom, traveler, translator, writer and photographer. Looking for comrades to start a new revolution.

25 Comments

  1. LOL Hi Z’hu

    Why do you think I’m back in France ? My ex husband, canadian born, was fed up the winter and personnaly, it lasted too long.

    What’s worth ? same rain and humidity in Paris or blue sky, cold weather of Ottawa ? I still don’t know..;

    Greats pics of Ottawa
    .-= Crikette´s last blog ..ABP : Aurores Boréales Parisiennes =-.

  2. Excellent night shots! I like the Canal & Downtown shot, wonderful light trails from the cars!
    London night sky is always very orange – not sure if this is what we call light pollution?!

    Re :Spring is awakening / 春回大地 / Musim bunga sudah bagun / 大地に春が来る

    I am a late winter baby! And you’re an early spring baby!
    You know what, summer babies are most popular!!! I have so many friends who are born in June, July and August!! Ha ha…

    Re: Wake up, Daffodils! / 水仙花,起床咯! / Bagunlah Dafodil! / 水仙、起きろ!

    It’s quite normal. It’s about this time of the year, that spring flowers start to pop out.
    .-= London Caller´s last blog ..Wake up, Daffodils! / 水仙花,起床咯! / Bagunlah Dafodil! / 水仙、起きろ! =-.

  3. Beautiful night images! I was in Ottawa in May many years ago. It was still bright around 9:00 pm, but it must be certainly better than the length of cold in winter. I like the canal shot too~~
    .-= micki´s last blog ..Gong Si Fa Tsai =-.

  4. There is something about snow that makes everything look so much better. Ah the cold snaps nothing feels better then when they warm up to -15 when they have been -30 or colder.

  5. @Nigel Babu – Thank you! I’s one of my favorite viewpoint in the city.

    @Beth – It’s true, we barely had any snow this year, even in Ottawa. More than in Toronto, but definitely not as much as usual.

    @Crikette – Call me crazy but I think I still like Canadian winters best… I grew up in Nantes and the humidity just killed me.

    @Agnes – Thank you Agnes!

    @London Caller – The sky is often this color in the winter, right after sunset. Not sure why…

    @Sidney – 😆 I know, it does look crazy, doesn’t it!

    @Lizz – Thank you so much!

    @micki – In the summer, days are very long and sunset is around 9 or 10 om. That I love!

    @Charles Dastodd – Thank you!

    @Yogi – Yes, it does get to you after a while. But Oklahoma is colder than I thought from what I see in your pictures!

    @Andy Rodriguez – Gracias 😉

    @Tanya – It felt the same here. One Monday, I was like “oh, am I ahead…?”. Nope, just the days that got longer 😆

    @Lis of the North – Yes, we do get a lot of snow in Ottawa, although not so much this winter. But because we are expecting it, we also organized for it.

    @dobbes – Thank you for commenting… and yes, I agree. The first snow is just magical, suddenly all the dirt is covered and even the sounds are muffled. That said, after a few months… snow doesn’t look so great!

  6. but zhu, look at the beautiful photographs you take in winter. a stupid staircase is just a stupid staircase without a foot of snow on it. and look how clear your photos are- without the distortion of pollution and grime.
    now go light a candle and see how pretty the glow is from inside your igloo. you won’t find *that* in california.
    p.s. it was 70 degrees warm today. but they say this weekend we might get some rain.
    i’ll be praying it snows in vancouver, b.c, et aussi les laurentides.
    .-= Seraphine´s last blog ..The Sick Olympics =-.

  7. Hey Zhu,

    Yep, Canadian winter is what made my parents leave Canada in the first place (as for us kids, we loved it).

    But Ottawa is gorgeous at night: winter and summer :D!

    I am so glad Spring time is near: in Portugal temps are rising (thank God) and by May…I don’t need to tell you, right? 😉

    Loved this post!

    Cheers
    .-= Max Coutinho´s last blog ..Arrogance… =-.

  8. Terrific photos. I just love living here in Ottawa and you have really captured the essence of the place [as far as such a thing is possible] with your photos and commentary. Wow!
    Just today, a friend visiting me from out of town was going on and on about what a beautiful place this. We were stopped at a red light right in the Market and made note of the fact that there was NO GARBAGE… no LITTER, anywhere.
    I said to him, “If I ever start telling you that I am moving from Ottawa, I want you to immediately kick me in the head.”
    Cheers!

  9. Pingback: Nantes By Night | Correr Es Mi Destino

  10. It’s amazing how cities around the world become trendy, and becacause that fact travellers miss those hidden gems all over the globe. I’m so glad an excited I’m moving besides my lovely small family to this beautiful city in the next two months.

    Everytime I read your posts about Ottawa and see your city awesome pictures, I feel more closer and get more familiar with it.

    Thank you Zhu for bring me those eyes and soul closer to my destiny. You constantly confirm my right choice.

    Cheers

    • Well, first let me say “welcome to Ottawa”! Let me know if I can be of any help, you know where to find me 😉 You are from Spain, right?

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