Thursday, February 13, 2014

Frozen Hearts And Popsicle Toes

Yesterday morning I got up around 4AM to check the weather conditions.  The only thing that was going on was a placid scene outside my window.  The local weather station had forecast that the big snowstorm was supposed to hit my area by early morning.

Since I saw no snow except what was already on the ground from Tuesday’s snowfall, I went back to bed to catch a few more Zzzz’s.

I reset my alarm for 8:00.  When that nasty alarm went off, I got up and looked outside my window once again.  Nothing. 

I decided to go ahead and take my meds and fix some breakfast then crank up the car to let it warm up.  The weather geeks were right.  The snow was coming.  I looked once more out my window and saw the snow coming down heavy.  The time was 9:30.

I gave my little furkid reassurances that I would be back that night and I locked the door and climbed into my car.

The roads in my neighborhood were covered with the white stuff but they were passable if you used extreme caution.

As I traveled north along the interstate, the roads became more and more treacherous.  I drove defensively keeping a healthy distance from the few cars that were on the road.  My commute to work usually takes a tad more than 30 minutes.  Wednesday’s commute took an hour-and-a-half.

When I got to work, I parked in the parking deck.  I figured I wouldn’t have to scrape the snow and ice off my windshield when I got off from work.  That was a smart move if I do say so myself.

We continued to receive weather updates throughout the day and management began to let some of the workforce leave early.  There were enough supervisors present that I requested to leave early as well.  I was denied that opportunity.  That was at 2:38 PM.

I continued to work despite becoming more and more anxious about the commute home.  I got wind of management allowing additional employees to leave early.  That was around 4 PM.  Now, I was just angry.

I approached my management team once more and was denied yet again.  I became resolute that I would be spending the night at work.  I wasn’t happy about it, but what could I do?

Then management came to my location and starting letting more folks to go home.  I gave them the “death stare”.  They relented and I was allowed to punch the time clock at 17:41 to go home.

I caught the shuttle bus to the parking deck, paid the attendant and got in my car.

There was virtually no one on the road.  It was still snowing and the roads were covered.  There were very few tire tracks that you could follow, so the trip was juusssst a touch scary.

I never accelerated beyond 40mph.  The skies were gray and visibility was less than a ¼ mile.  It took me two hours to get home.

When I walked in the door, I cranked up the heat because the wind chill was 11°.  BRRRR!

I loved on my little furkid telling her I was glad to be home safe and sound, peeled off my uniform and put on my comfy flannel PJs.   I fixed myself a big ‘ol mug of hot chocolate.  I was hungry so I fixed myself a sammich.

Overnight, the snow changed to sleet.  There were reports of massive power outages in South Carolina and all I could do was pray that I wouldn’t be affected.

The picture above was snapped at 7 AM this morning.  That’s the garden flag that is located by the steps where I enter my house.  The little cardinal looked at me quizzically.  I went inside and got some bread to throw out so that he and his little friends could graze.

Now, it’s 9:14 AM and it has started to rain a fine mist.  It’s currently 29° and that means that the trees are going to become heavy-laden with ice.  I am praying that the rain stops soon because I don’t want my power to go out.

I stuck a yardstick in the snow and there are 9 inches of the stuff on the ground.  My footprints are filled in from where I walked in last night.

I know the folks who see snow all the time are making fun of us Southerners right now.  We don’t get enough snow where I live for the municipalities to invest in a lot of snow removal equipment.  I also know you guys make fun of us for making a mad rush to the grocery store for bread and milk.

I called off of work this morning.  It just isn’t worth it to make the attempt to get to work.  So, I’m going to fix myself some hash browns, scrambled eggs and sausage and a couple of pieces of toast.  Then I’m going to put on my ski bibs and mittens.

I’m going to go into the attic and pull down my 50-year-old Flexible Flyer and sled down the hill a couple of hundred times.  I’m going to enjoy the “Snowpocalypse”.  You only live once.  You take your joy where you can find it.

UPDATE 9:37AM:  The misty rain has changed over to snow again.  It’s heavy.  Really, really heavy.  I’m going to throw another log or two on the fire.  I just checked the Accuweather forecast—they are saying we’re in for another 3 inches of snow and it’s expected to taper off by late afternoon.

I feel a snow angel coming on.  Have great day and stay safe out there everyone.
Here's my Flexible Flyer.  Photo taken around 2:00 PM today.
UPDATE 2:38 PM:  The snow has stopped just as the weatherman predicted.  My home weather station is currently reading 39°.  The icicles that were hanging off my easements have melted and the fat, fluffy snow that covered the trees has begun to fall to the ground.

My local weather dude says all the counties in my area will remain under a Winter Storm Warning until 6 PM.  The sun is trying desperately to peek through the gray,  cloudy skies.  This evening the temps are going to drop down into the 20s and all this glorious snow is going to refreeze.

He said, "The main roads look good, but getting to the main roads from your neighborhood is an adventure. If you don't have a 4-wheel drive, you're not going to make it!  Travel this evening, overnight and in the early morning hours is still strongly discouraged!”

I’ve got 11 inches of snow.  The sledding was great.  I’m super-tired now.  My neighbor, Roy, thought I was nuts at my age to go sledding.  I got him back by reminding him it’s good to have fun.  Fun makes you feel young.  He laughed and said I was right.

Big Oak Tree Covered With Snow at 1230 PM
The sun finally makes an appearance around 330 PM

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