It's funny how the same words can evoke different things for different people. Currently on the third leg of the Hannibal trilogy by Thomas Harris, I noticed how he uses the word "steam" to convey a sense of the cold. I have always associated the word with "hot", "piping", even "anger". As in "she lifted the steaming idlis from the cooker". Whereas he invokes it as in "Breath steaming in the cool of the winter air".
Essentially a case of some warm air meeting something cold air, but for me it was usually "very hot meeting normal"
against his "lukewarm meeting cold".