Winter is Here

Noowong_Headshot By Anchitta Noowong

Winter is coming, winter is here. Are you feeling sad this winter? You’re not alone. Being born and raised in a hot tropical country, it was difficult for me to live in a place where it’s cold and dark half the year. I remember my first Portland winter, and it was brutal. I recalled that it rained all the time, there was no sunlight, and everything was just gross. I remember feeling depressed, sad, tired, and unmotivated. I figured that I couldn’t live like that, so I adapted and found ways that help me get through Pacific Northwest winter.

Looking for more information? Follow these links below:
SAD: https://ghr.nlm.nih.gov/condition/seasonal-affective-disorder
Endorphins: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/320839.php
PSU SHAC: https://www.pdx.edu/shac/aboutshac

Singin’ in the Rain

I’m sitting in the lobby of the Rec Center watching the rain pour down with a vengeance. People are running through the Urban Plaza in a futile attempt to stay dry. I sigh and go back to studying. It’s only 4 o’clock and already so dark. I squint to make out the words on the paper. It’s cold in here, so I slide my bag over and sit up on the window ledge directly on top of the radiator. My eyes are starting to feel heavy, which is absurd given that I’ve had at least three cups of coffee already today. I will myself to focus. I really need to study, but I’m just so sleepy.

Suddenly, I hear the strumming of an acoustic guitar coming from overhead near the street level entrance. I hear someone clear their throat and then: “I wanna make you smile whenever you are sad, carry you around when your arthritis is bad, all I wanna do is grow old with you,” a male voice croons. People start to cheer and sing along. I can’t see what’s happening, but I think someone is probably feeling very surprised right about now. I hear giggling and imagine that the recipient of the serenade is quite red in the face. The singer gains confidence and belts out the last few lines to his sweetheart, “Oh, I could be the man to grow old with you. I wanna grow old with you!” Wild applause and laughter fills the air. I smile to myself and go back to studying feeling a little lighter.