It´s all relative

Last week in Mumbai, one of the Indian participants in my Cross-Cultural Workshop told me that sometimes it can get really chilly in Mumbai … once, he told me, the temperature plummeted to 18 degrees Celsius! I pretended to look impressed.

Cold (and heat) is a relative concept, as is demonstrated in this “oldie” I dug up from the archives.



+25°C Norwegians cannot function properly so you might as well send them all home from work anyway so that they can get sweat it out until temperatures drop back to “normal maximum temperatures of around +18°C.

+18°C This is as warm as it normally gets in Norway. People in Spain wear winter-coats and gloves. The Norwegians are out in the sun, getting a tan.

+10°C The French are trying in vain to start their central heating. The Norwegians plant flowers in their gardens.

+5°C Italian cars won’t start. The Norwegians are cruising in cabriolets.

0°C Distilled water freezes. The water in Oslofjord gets a little thicker.

-5°C People in California almost freeze to death. The Norwegians have their final barbecue before winter.

-10°C The Brits start heating their houses. The Norwegians start using long sleeves.

-15°C The Aussies flee from Mallorca. The Norwegians end their Midsummer celebrations. Autumn is here.

-20°C People in Greece die from the cold and disappear from the face of the earth. The Norwegians start drying their laundry indoors.

-30°C Parisians drop like flies if they open the window. The Norwegians stand in line at the hotdog stands.

-50°C Polar bears start evacuating the North Pole. The Norwegian army postpones their winter survival training to wait for real winter weather.

-60°C Santa moves south. The Norwegian army goes out on winter survival training. Kindergartens in Norway have the option to keep their kids indoors.

-183°C Microbes in food don’t survive. The Norwegian cows complain that the farmers’ hands are cold.

-273°C All atom and subatomic particles movement halts. The Norwegians start saying “Faen! its cold outside today!”

-300°C Hell freezes over, Norway wins an important football match.

Trine Riccardi