Civic on a lunchtime in winter is like trekking across the Arctic tundra. Puffer jackets are everywhere, shielding us against the howling winds of Garema Place; protecting us from the driving rain of Petrie Plaza; helping us to scale the heady heights of the Canberra Centre escalators.
They're on the public servants at lunch, the tradies, the yummy mummies, the tourists, the kids.
Even on a day of unseasonably warm winter weather, when some people have stripped off to a singlet, we're still in our puffer jackets. They're everywhere.
But, to be honest, puffer jackets have infiltrated every aspect of life in Canberra in the colder months.
They are shoulder-to-shoulder across sports fields on the weekend as we watch the kids play sport. Slung on the backs of chairs at the pub. Round the lake. Up the local mountain. In cafes. Boardrooms. Schools. Offices.
They have well and truly moved from the mountains to the street.
Newly-minted Labor Senator Kristina Keneally was wearing a particularly fetching puffer jacket at St Christopher's in Manuka earlier this week to celebrate the new Parliament, on a morning so cold, the politicians' hot air was there for all to see.
And she was happy to tell us about it.
"I bought my puffer jacket at an outlet mall in Hawaii of all places because I was so cold travelling to Canberra when I was working for Sky News," Senator Keneally says.
"My number-one priority was that it was on sale."
Oh, yes, we love puffer jackets, with their signature quilted design. Be they filled with the down of the finest hand-raised Canadian geese or a strip of the nastiest synthetic going around.
And we wear them, with pride. Whether we look like a lithe Gisele Bundchen-type with our activewear perfect underneath, or a roly-poly Michelin Man, still happily warm no matter what. (Don't worry, I'm with you in the latter category.)
"They're just so warm and light and very comfortable," Turner video editor Chris Button, 25, says, wearing his Macpac with pride.
"As soon as it gets cold in Canberra, everyone busts out the puff." Indeed.
Some of us, like communication adviser Andrea Wild, from Palmerston, even give our puffer jackets names. Yes we do.
"This is Mr Puffer," she says, wearing her long-line Kathmandu jacket. "And I have Little Miss Puffer at home. It's shorter and there's not as much down."
And she is only a recent convert.
"I've been here since I was eight, so 35 years in Canberra. For 35 years, I've been cold in Canberra. Now, I have a puffer jacket and I'm fine," she says, with a laugh.
"I'm a bit of a cold fish so sometimes I can sit at my desk until noon, wearing my jacket. Then I'll take it off and wrap it up and use it as a cushion."
The high-end fashion houses have not ignored the trend. There are Prada puffer jackets. Burberry ones. A puffer jacket from Italian label Moncler can set you back thousands of dollars.
Everyone from Meghan Markle to Kim Kardashian have been spotted wearing one.
Grace Cooper, 29, of O'Connor, knows how to inject a bit of fashion into the puffer jacket trend.
The 29-year-old investigator was wearing her puffer jacket in Civic with a flirty skirt and ankle boots.
"I've only had this jacket for two weeks," she says.
"I don't live with my mum but she is obsessed with me being cold and she was like, 'Please let me buy you one!'.
"I think I've worn it every day since."
Heidi Rozitis, from Belconnen, is passionate about her Uniqlo puffer jacket, the Japanese label probably doing more than any other brand, to drive down the price of the jacket, while still remaining stylish.
"We need a Uniqlo here, I'm serious," she says.
"Another one is about to open in Melbourne, so that will be four in Melbourne." Seething.
Heidi wouldn't wear anything else in winter in Canberra.
"You look like a giant caterpillar, but you're warm," she says.
Lisa Cullen, 42, from Tuggeranong, is also a Uniqlo fan.
The public servant has a belted, long-line jacket.
"It's like a doona," she says.
Anne Arndt, 61, a tourist from Germany, was wearing one of the puffer jackets of the day, a gold number from the Amsterdam-based label Beaumont.
"I like it because it's warm," she says. "It's pretty cold in Germany and I need it for the winter."
Young public servants Thomas Johnstone, 18, of Nicholls, and Alice Austin, 19, of Garran, were a lovely blast of colour against the beige of Garema Place.
Thomas had bought his first puffer jacket about a month ago, from North Face. Alice has a collection of them.
"I bought this about four days ago. It's Zara. I like it because it's red and a little bit longer," she says.
So would they wear their puffer jacket anywhere?
"Yep," Alice says.
Even a wedding?
"Oh, maybe not a wedding," Alice says, with a laugh.
Public servant Heather Gellatly, 51, of Curtin, loves her silver Kathmandu jacket.
"I live in it. It's just really warm," she says.
Matt Coffey, 45, a public servant from South Canberra, spent about $170 on his Columbia jacket and wears it most days.
"It's kind of got a special reflective interior which keeps the heat in," he says, adding it's perfect for watching kids' sport on windswept ovals.
Public servant Venkata Seelam, 37, of Coombs like his jacket just because it's warm. We love it for its colour.
Nineteen-year-old communications student Clare Roche was back home in Canberra, from uni in Bathurst, trying out Segways - in her puffer jakcet - watched by mum Margaret, from Wallaroo.
"The jacket is actually my mum's, she lent it to be. They're very warm and light and I can't believe how comfortable they are," Clare says.
So how does a real mountaineer feel about our craze for puffer jackets?
Retired army officer and experienced adventurer, Zac Zaharias, conquered Mount Everest in 2010.
So what puffer jacket did he wear to the top of the world?
"I've still got it," he says.
"There were two different kinds for Everest. For the top, you wear a full-body down suit, top and bottom connected. You do look like the Michelin man. The only thing that's exposed is your nose, and not even that really, when you have the oxygen mask on.
"People always ask me how I go to the toilet in it. Well, it has a bum flap. And you have to be very careful unzipping it and working your way around it.
"I also had a really thick down jacket, I usually got them from Mont or Mountain Designs.
"The cheaper jackets, still have cold spots - it gets through the stitching. What you're paying for with the more expensive jackets is the baffle construction. " That basically means each square is sewn in tight, with another layer of fabric over the stitching.
But when it comes to everyday use around Canberra, Zaharias is a man of the people when it comes to puffer jackets - he's got five or six Uniqlo jackets and a vest.
"They're cheap and they're light and I like you can stuff them into a small backpack and carry them anywhere," he says.
Zaharias, who now leads groups to the Himalayas, was actually speaking to us from the Kokoda Track, where he did have a Uniqlo jacket stuffed in his backpack.
And he has seen the rise of the puffer jacket to everyday wear and can both laugh about it and appreciate how more people should be able to benefit from such a utilitarian piece of equipment.
"What I would tell them though is if they want to be really authentic, they should wear the full-body suit with the bum flap to their next party," he says.