Banner photo of Larry Eugene Meredith, Ronald Tipton and Patrick Flynn, 2017.

The good times are memories
In the drinking of elder men...

-- Larry E.
Time II

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Snow Day

I am standing on the lake to take the picture. It has been frozen since before winter officially began. It has been cold here for most of the month and with temperatures well below the average. Takes me back to my childhood. It got very cold in the winter then and snow came early and stayed late. Me thinks the weather has cycled back again. We are going to begin the day after Christmas as a fine time to stay in and keep warm, perhaps with a good book. Plans called for settling down tonight with a good old fashioned football game in the snow, but the wimps postponed it until Tuesday.

Who ever heard of them postponing football because of a little snow.

There is some good news anyway. The Giants lost to Green Bay and that clinches first place in the Eastern Division for the Eagles.

Also, one of the associate managers called and I don't have to go to work tomorrow. Okay, so I'm a wimp, too. I would have gone otherwise, but I admit I feel better not having to face those snow-covered roads tomorrow morning. It's a sign of age, but I don't like driving in bad weather anymore.

The real good news is this storm came after Christmas. Otherwise a lot of visiting may not have happened and Christmas would have been postponed too, perhaps to Tuesday.

As it was, we got things in, even my morning walks. I went to Bellevue this morning and walked down around the frozen lake as you can see. It was very cold because of a wind. The chill factor was 13 degrees. It was gray, but I had truly expected to be walking in snow and there was none. I like walking in falling snow in its beginning, not after you get several inches on the ground to slough through.

The forecasters have been running after that snow for over a week trying to pin it down. There are politicians trying to control our lives, Hollywood stars trying to prove they know more than how to look pretty and various Global Warming types claiming to know what our weather will be ten, twenty, fifty or one hundred years in the future, when the truth is even meteorologists can't guess right a couple days ahead or tell us with any certainty what will happen tomorrow.

Because I walk so often at dawn's early light I constantly check the weather forecasts.

A week ago it was snow beginning on Christmas Eve lasting through the Monday after, accumulating over eight inches, plus another snow on New Year's Day. A couple days later this forecast became "a possibility of snow on Christmas and flurries on Sunday," with basically no accumulation and New Year's Day would be sunny. On Christmas Eve the possibility had changed to Sunday, but with no snow on Christmas and rain on New Year's Day. On Christmas Day it became snow on Sunday beginning at 7:00 AM, although it was snowing at the moment I was reading it. This early Christmas morn snow did not last long nor amount to even a dusting; however, the day stayed gray with that snow-is-coming look to the sky, thus I expected to be walking in snow Sunday morning.

When I got up and prepared to go for my walk, the forecast had moved any snow to 10:00 AM and we were to have a Blizzard running into Monday.  
It didn't actually begin snowing until closer to 11:00 AM, but it has been steady since. We'll see what develops.

It was cold this morning, though. I only met one other person on the trails. I saw a SUV parked along the road and then heard an odd banging down the path where it curves. I saw a man off the paved walk in the bushes.  What is he up to? I could have cut across the old parking lot here and picked up the path without going near this guy, but what is the adventure in that? I kept to the path and as I neared he stepped from the brush with his arms full of wood and a half-moon saw.

"Good morning," I said.

"Good morning."

"Firewood or art material?" I asked.

"Strictly firewood," he answered.

"Ah, a practical use," I said and we went our separate ways.

The snow started an hour or so after I got home sometime around 10:30. It started slow, but it began covering the ground and street fast enough. Everything was frozen so flakes didn't melt at first, but simply adhered and built from there.

The TV was full of the usual foolish newspeople standing in the weather trying to find something to say beyond the obvious, "Well, it's snowing out here." I always love how they stand by a road side telling us how dangerous it is to drive and traffic has been slowed to a crawl and behind them cars go whizzing by.

It snowed all day, yet the depth wasn't growing. By late in the afternoon, as darkness began to crawl in, we had no more than two inches.

The yard was white and my bushes had a light dusting.

At four o'clock this morning, The Little Woman awakes me from my sleep to inform me the power has gone out. The little Woman has a sleep problem and so she had been up cruising the internet. She had been looking at house ads, of all things, when there was a flash of light and a loud explosion outback along the fence line. Then all went dark. And so now she was waking me and asking me to get my cell phone from the car, oh joy, joy. She wants me to call the power company and report the outage. We have a combined cable-internet-phone package and whenever we lose power, we lose all three. This is why she wants me to get my cell phone from the car. I really never use my cell. My mom is always nagging me to carry it when I take my walks just in case I am mauled by a bear or something and need rescuing. I never remember to do that. I did remember to bring the phone in the other day and charge it up well. You see, I only got it for emergencies and I guess The Little Woman considers this blackout an emergency.

I get up and begin the process of pulling on some clothes. The Little Woman climbs into bed and pulls the covers up to her chin. Oh, I see where this is going. She's going to get to sleep now and I am going to get cold and wet and wide awake. I am going to be wide awake in a dark house where I can do nothing but stare at the dark.

I grab a flashlight and first find the number of DelMarVa and write it down in big letters so I can read it later. I get my car keys and I go outside and down to the car. The car is buried and a wind is whipping snow across my face and my hands are turning numb already as I try to uncover the lock. Enough, I retreat inside and fish my right-hand glove from my coat pocket. Now protected I go again and succeed in retrieving my cell.  I report the outage. Eight o'clock is the estimated fix time. We will see.

Although I am skeptical (yeah about the fix time, sure, but also that I can get back to sleep) I crawl into bed and shut my eyes.

The next time I open them I see the clock on the nightstand is lit. The power is back. It is seven o'clock. I was wrong all around. I did fall asleep and the power is actually on before eight o'clock. Thank you, DelMarVa.

So now I am up. I feed the cats and I put on the coffee. I bundle up and go out and shovel the driveway and front walks. There is at least eight inches of snow and also a two foot drift down the East side of the drive. I wonder if shoveling snow will equal my walk, for no walk today, not in eight inches of snow. I am the only house on the block with a shoveled sidewalk and those woodland trails won't by shoveled. Besides, who knows what the roads are like. I am not worried about hungry bears; they are all hibernating by now.

We have a great snow removal service in our development and our street is nicely plowed and powdered with some kind of melting ingredient. I snap a couple of new photos. I take some seed out to the birds. I come back in and I sit here in comfort sipping my coffee and finishing my post.

Oh, and they are calling for sun and clouds on New Year's Day now, but rain next Sunday -- for now.

1 comment:

Ron said...

I don't believe I ever walked in the snow just as it was falling but I would like to. It really sounds nice.

You're lucky you didn't have to go into work. You don't want to go out on I-95 in this mess.

I enjoyed my walk with you on your trail this morning, photos and all. Can you imagine how many pictures we would have at our advanced age if we had digital cameras when we were young whippersnappers? In a way it's a shame we didn't because just imagine all the old pictures we would have of family and friends. I often think of all the missed opportunities.

Back to you and your walk. Yes, PLEASE ALWAYS carry your cell phone (turned on) when you leave home. It is a good habit to get into. I'm always surprised at the number of calls I get when I'm away from home on my cell phone. I only have a TracFone, not one of those fancy dandy phones but it is valuable to me. I have to remind Bill to take his phone with him. He always forgets too.

Nice posting Lar. You're a good writer. I felt like I was on the snowy paths with you with the suspicious characters.