I hunch up and hug my arms. Still freezing. Whoever said Anchorage, Alaska, gets more sunshine than Seattle ought to get shot. Or forced to move here permanently, with no vacation rights in warmer parts of the world such as Hawaii, the Sahara Desert or even... yeah, even Seattle.
Here I am, Sarah Hadfield, age 28, born and bred in the rain of Seattle, exposed to the icy whips of the Arctic winds. A whim? A hunch? Following a dream?
Wikipedia puts Anchorage’s temperatures between 5F in the winter up to toasty seventy-eight degrees in summer, but if this is five degrees, I’m Gossip Girl.
Woollen bliss wraps around my shoulders. It smells of fresh pinewood chippings.
“Thanks,” I mumble into the lining. “Where are you heading?” A cursory civility on my part, for no matter where this stranger was going with his wonderfully warm jacket, he’s now coming to the museum with me. At least his jacket is.
He must have read my mind. “I’ll just follow you.”
OK, this is going to be awkward. Maybe. People accuse me of acting first and thinking later. Best to get it over and done with.
“I’m on my way to the museum.” No need to say which museum, Anchorage has only the one. Moving my lips gives me the illusion of exercise-induced warmth, so I plough on. May as well get it out in the open. “They have a speed dating evening in their café.”
“In the Muse? Cosy.”
Oh, I hope so. The longer I stay in the jacket’s embrace, the more I loathe the idea of ever being cold again.