Wednesday, 6 January 2010

Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow!

Yesterday, the BBC started warning us that it was going to snow heavily. Initially, they said it would snow yesterday, which concened me as I was due to be in court, and had carefully taken the file with me (on the basis that even if I couldn't get into the office, I could walk to the station and get a train, to get to court, if need be)

However, no snow yesterday morning, and although it snowed a little as I came out of court, it didn't settle, and I was able to get back to the office, work until the normal time and get home without incident.

The forecast had been for snow in the afternoon and evening, so when I found myself on the way to bed at 11 p.m. with no sign of any snow, I concluded that the BBC had erred, and that I would, after all, have to get up and go to work as usual.

When the alarm went off I peered out of the window, assuming I would simply have the usual job of scraping ice of the car windscreen. However, it immediately became obvious that I wouldn't be going anywhere I couldn't get to on foot - we had between 3" and 4" of snow - more, I think, than we got last February - or at least more in one go.
It's probably a sign of advancing age that rather than leap out of bed and run out to play in the snow, I instead thought 'Hurrah!' and turned over to snuggle under the duvet for another hour! (although to be fair, not even the local children were out there in the blue morning light at 6 a.m)
As I made breakfast, I saw that the snowballers were out - including one (teenage boy, who else?) wearing jeans & T-shirt with no coat or gloves (I was wearing 3 layers and I was inside!) and another (pre-teen girl) in shortie pyjamas, dressing gown & Ugg boots!

Later in the morning their parents came out, and helped them to build a magnificant 8' tall snowman,
which will no doubt be with us for some time to come...

I went out a little later, in order to buy milk and chocolate HobNobs - it was unusally quiet - you tend not to notice the low hum of traffic in the background until it isn't there. There were a few people who had decided to venture out in their cars despite the snow - just enough of them to compact the snow from 4" of soft, fluffy snow (The kind that makes a creaking crunch when you step on it) into a solid block of ice.
I watched one car skate gracelessly into the kerb, wheels pointing 45 degrees from the direction of travel and spinning ineffectually. I think the driver had expected that (a) braking would cause him to slow down and (b) turning the wheel would allow him to turn right.

A second driver, behind him, decided that the sensible response to this was to accelerate and swing past him... I was very glad that I had not tried to move my car at all.

Even the more main roads were very slushy and icy, and as far as I could tell were clear(ish) as a result of traffic, not because they had been gritted.

I went for a little walk into the park and through the nature reserve on my way back from the minimarket, admiring the beautiful pictures the snow had painted on the trees and plants.

It started to thaw just a little this afternoon, but only enough to create a few icicles and, no doubt, ensure that the snow freezes and becomes even more slippery. We are predicted to have temperatures well below freezing overnight, so I am not at all sanguine about the prospect of reaching the office tomorrow, either. I did clear and salt the pavement immediately outside my house, but anticipate that the road will be too icy for it to be safe to drive, at least first thing.
We shall see.
Meanwhile, Tybalt has made it clear to me that he does not appreciate snow, that he disapproves of my poor management in allowing it to be snowy outside the back door, the front door and the window, all at the same time. I am not entirely satified that providing him with an indoor litter tray and and a new fleece to snuggle into has done enough to placate him...
I am not even going to think about the gas bill. I'd rather stay warm and worry about it later.


rashbre said...

There is something very satisfying about making that underfoot, crunchy, squeaking sound when walking on the new, fresh and uncompacted snow.

Siri said...

OK - all you who keep using that phrase (let it snow X 3) - STOP IT, please and thank you. The Wintersmith is listening!

I'm looking out my window at yet another 7", with winds 25 - 30 miles per hour from the north, creating yet another ground blizzard. And, it's -11 celsius, too.

Your snow sounds much more fun than mine!

Marjorie said...

I'm sorry, Siri. It was intended as a comment rather than a request..

I'm not sure that ours is more fun, it just seems like it because we don't get it so often - last time it was as cold & snowy as this was 1981.

We are being told temps. here may reach -10C overnight. Brrrrr.

Siri said...

WE've been berating a woman at work who swiched out her bat candy dish for her L-I-S X3 candy dish - we are blaming her, too.

I went out to my mailbox, which is about 50 yards away - felt like I was treking to the South Pole. It's now -12C, so I don't envy you your overnight temps! Who would live in the Midwest?

And what is all this about global warming?