Is This Winter?

With a high temperature of 50 F forecast for Christmas day, I wanted to capture a picture of snow while it was falling today.

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Our friend, Ratty, recently  posted pix of falling snow and shared the secret to capturing images of that snow.  I tried it, and it works.  Not much snow to see, but that’s okay by me.

I also checked out the view from the other end of our house.

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I’m thinking green Christmas.  I can stand it.  Can you?

Rime Time

I awoke Sunday to a beautiful morning.  Heavy frost covered the area.  The newly risen sun made it glisten like diamonds.  (Why can’t I capture that in an image?)

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I could almost hear Tony Tiger singing, It’s gonna be a great day!  There were clouds in the sky to the south.  Looking north, I saw a beautiful dark blue heaven.

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Sunday also marked the beginning of Advent.  It was an excellent day.

Beware the Aftermath . . .

The county snow plow came by today in the early morning hours.  It is nice to live on this road now that I don’t have to get out and go to work every day.  Thirty years ago, I wrapped my working career in broadcasting.  That was a smart move!

Okay, I was an engineer and worked inside — most of the time. “The show must go on,” and someone had to be there to turn on the equipment and keep it working. Later, as a book editor, I could work from home on nasty days. It made my days safer and more productive.

Now on those nasty snow days, Midnight and I get comfy in the recliner and check our eyelids for leaks. Wake me when it’s spring. Okay?

The Blizzard of 2011

Thank goodness it’s over!  I’m sitting here at 4:45 AM as I start to write this.  I’ve been awake for the last two hours.  I’m too sore to sleep.  After lunch yesterday, the snow was starting to taper down and winds were also abating.  I decided to go outside and see if I could get some of the mess cleared away.  It took a while to clear the drive to the barn.

I’m glad I didn’t have to clear all this by hand!  A few hours later and I was working my way down the driveway.

It was slow work, and the day kept moving on.  Fortunately the snow had stopped and the winds were calm.

As you can see, it was getting on toward late afternoon.  I still had a long way to go.

That’s when I got stuck.  There was a sheet of ice between the snow and the driveway.  In other words, no traction for my tractor.  I had to dig my way free.  It took quite a while and several attempts.

Just about the time I got the tractor free my neighbor with the BIG John Deere came to the rescue.  He cleaned out the worst of the bottom of the drive.  The sun was setting as I returned up the hill to do just a bit more near the house.

Maybe the county will send a snow plow down our road later today or tomorrow.  I don’t really care.  I’m too tired and sore to care.  Besides where else would a guy like me want to be?

More snow

My friend, Vanilla, posted pictures on his blog yesterday from the blizzard of 1978. I remember that storm well. We were living in Portland, Michigan and were snowed it for three days. I know I have pictures somewhere from that storm. I spent several hours looking for them, but was unable to locate them. Even Sylvia was not able to find them.

All I could find was a couple of pictures from 1967. We were living in a rental house on the north side of Lansing, Michigan — not far from the Michigan School for the Blind. Sylvia was teaching there at the time.

Our older son was four-years-old, and would start kindergarten later that year. We had just bought and old farm house — our first home. We had planned to move on a Saturday. I had loaded the trunk of our 1959 Chevrolet with books. There must have been 300 pounds of them.

On Firday afternoon, the snow began to fall. I was working for IBM at the time and was called in to assist on a service call around mid-afternoon. The problem was a particular difficult one and it was after 5 PM when I started for home.  Once I got back to the city, the road dipped down to cross the Grand River. It then when up a hill for a couple of blocks. 

The snow was falling fast and there were probably four inches or so of fresh snow everywhere. The road had not been plowed. My old Chev was doing just fine with all that ballast in the trunk. Then I saw that after the first cross street the road was plugged with cars that were not able to negotiate the hill. 

I turned onto that first side road and made my way home on those neighborhood streets. I had to break open new tracks, but the car got through and I made it home to my wife and son.

The next morning, Saturday, we woke to realize that we snowed in. The snow drifts were chest high. It was a couple of days before we were able to make it out of the neighborhood. 

We were going to move that weekend. We had to postpone for a week. Fortunately, I was able to navigate the rental truck the next weekend through another four inches of fresh snow. Perhaps that’s a story for another day.

The Other Side of Snow

Yesterday, I shared a poem that told of the romance of a snow day. There is the other side.

It starts by getting all layered up with warm clothes.

Then you go out in it. Soon the glasses darken, but it is nice and quiet as you work by hand with the shovel.

Over my left shoulder is the office where I’m sitting now as I write this. All too soon, I’m ready to go to the barn, start the tractor and start moving snow in a hurry. It is more efficient. I only wish it was as quiet and peaceful, but my back doesn’t mind at all.