When Karen Paredes moved to Brandon from El Salvador, she only knew “winter” as rain season.
“Back home there’s only two seasons, summer and winter. The summer is the same as here — hot. In wintertime it would be rain. Sometimes it could get really bad and parts of the country would be flooded, mostly it was just showers. There was never snow,” said the 25-year-old.
Paredes’ dad moved to Brandon eight years ago to work for Maple Leaf Foods. She, her mom, and her brother arrived six years ago as dependents.
The cold was the hardest thing to get used to.
“I liked trying to learn how to ski and ice skating, but I’m not good at it because I would just be cold,” she said. “I don’t like waking up in the morning and have to put on so many layers, and shovel the driveway, and warm up the car just to go to work.”
After being here for six years she said even though she doesn’t like it, she’s gotten used to it.
“My skin hasn’t adapted to the weather. It gets really itchy and really red.”
She said she uses lots of lotion to keep her skin moisturized and healthy during the winter months.
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