Sunday, December 30, 2012

Snow

L'Étang à Chez Sarge
As I mentioned in my last post, we had a bit of the white fluffy stuff on Saturday evening. You can see the result of that in the photo above. This is the pond at Chez Sarge, said photo being taken from atop the northern ramparts (that is, the bathroom window on the second floor of the manse).

In the background, patrolling the fence line, is the neighbor's dog Hercules. He's a fine lad who does security work 'round these parts.

Here's another pic of the white stuff, looking to the northeast:

La Clôture Nord-Est
It was some snow, not a lot by New England standards but enough to make things pretty. We always seem to get a snowfall a week or so before Christmas, or a week or so after Christmas. We never seem to get it "just right".

Now my idea of "just right" is approximately this much snow (as shown above), but no more. Just to give that White Christmas look. I've seen White Christmases that went a bit too far.

The Christmas of 1982 springs to mind.

We were assigned to Lowry AFB in Denver, Colorado and the Missus Herself was nine months pregnant with the Nuke. Substantial snowfall was predicted for Christmas Eve. According to competent medical personnel, the baby could come at any time.

I remember the day of the 23rd, I had to drive out to the Post Office to pick up a package. It was overcast and the air had this heavy feel to it. You just knew that something was brewing weather-wise. For those that know, an impending snow storm has a "feel" and a "smell" to it. Those who understand this need no explanation, for those who don't, it can't really be described. I guess you have to be from snow country.

So the day of Christmas Eve dawned and oh my Lord was it snowing!

Christmas in Denver, 1982
That's a "day after" photo. Just to give you an idea.

Now by Christmas Day, it had stopped snowing. But Denver had received over two feet of snow. The parking lot of our apartment building looked like an open field. The cars were literally buried. If you looked closely you could just see the tops of some cars. My little VW Beetle was completely buried.

So of course, Christmas Night, the Missus Herself announces that "It's time". Now of course, I respond with "Time for what?" That's when my eyes got really big as the light came on. My wife is NINE MONTHS PREGNANT, and she's saying "it's time". Holy Crap!

The city is buried. Very few roads have been plowed at all. The news is announcing that in case of emergency, make your way to the nearest main road after calling the police. "Someone in a four wheel drive vehicle will pick you up." (Sure they will...)

So there I was, bundling up to determine where the closest main road was. Well, I knew where it was, I had to get there and see if it had been plowed. Off I went into the dark, snow up to my knees and higher.

I found a path which some intrepid soul had blazed before me. Headed in the direction I wished to go, which made the trek somewhat easier. Not easy mind you, just easier.

'Lo and behold I arrived at the nearest main road to our humble abode. (Perhaps a quarter of a mile, not far on a sunny day. Try it at night, in the cold, many 6-foot snow drifts and the wind blowing. Oh, and did I mention that it was COLD!) And 'lo and behold it had actually been plowed and there was vehicular traffic moving thereupon. Not a lot of traffic but enough to let you know that the town wasn't completely immobilized.

While I didn't feel exactly like Lewis and Clark did upon arriving at the Pacific Ocean, the feeling of "well, I made it, now I just have to get back" must have been similar. So back I went.

On the trek back I was calculating what I would need to do upon arrival at the apartment. Call the police and inform them of my wife's condition, bundle up the 3 and a half year old Naviguesser and the Missus, put them both on the Naviguesser's sled and start hauling. I figured I was in for a rather long night.

But upon arrival, I was informed that the forthcoming birth of the Nuke would not be occurring that day. She was not to be born Christmas Day of 1982. No, that wondrous event would take place six days hence, on New Year's Eve.

By that time Denver had been plowed and life was somewhat back to normal. I do remember that the base was closed the entire week and that most of Denver was shut down as well. Seems that the Mayor of Denver made a number of foolish decisions in relation to the storm. He ordered trash trucks out to "compact the snow on the side streets". Seems that Denver only had 45 plows to deal with this massive snow fall.

The trash truck idea? Yeah, I remember driving through the resultant "snow potholes" for quite a while after the storm. Bill McNichols lost his reelection bid the following year. The Denverites were less than impressed with his performance during the Great Blizzard of '82. Can't say I could blame them.

So that was a White Christmas where we got a little too much snow. So to speak.

Yes, it looks pretty outside.

View to the North
But it would've been nicer last week at this time.

I'll be "off the grid" for a couple of days at the start of the New Year. Heading up to New Hampshire to visit me Mum. So to all of you and your families, I wish you

A Most Prosperous and
Happy New Year!


6 comments:

  1. Oh, Lord, I pictured you hauling a pregnant woman through the snow on a sled, like some bad silent movie melodrama "Nanook Of The North". Not to be unkind, but it made me smile. And that's worth a lot to me right now! Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, it wasn't funny at the time, but I do remember thinking that if we all survived that it would make a funny story in years to come. It is funny, looking back at it and I'm glad I could bring a smile to your face my friend.

      Delete
  2. I'm glad things worked out in the Great Blizzard o' 1982. As per, Jim, playing Nanook O' the North wouldn't have been ANY fun. At all.

    Apropos o' not much... I know snow. And again.

    Have fun at your Mom's!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It wasn't all that much fun at the time, looking back it is a pretty good story.

      Loved the links to your old snow posts. Looks exactly like I remember upstate New York.

      We had a great time up North with Mom and some of our friends up yonder. Thanks!

      Delete

Just be polite... that's all I ask. (For Buck)