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Scattering before the Storm

Scattered Saturday it is!  For one reason, I can type this in quickly (I hope) and get back to the relaxing portion of the day.  Just a note of background:  today is supposed to be a major winter storm.  The weather people have been talking about it for days now.  Right now is the part of the day we are supposed to be hunkered down, waiting till it is time to go out and do some major shoveling tomorrow.  I suppose I can make a blog post while I hunker, but I would rather be watching a movie or true crime television.  On with the blog post, so I can get back to it!

We got up early today, having gone to bed early last night.  I felt rather ill-used to have a headache first thing in the morning.  I hadn’t even had a Friday night libation!  I wondered if too much sleep was to blame.  YES, I slept a lot on Friday.  I had a migraine, remember?  At least, regular readers will remember.  For sporadic tuners-in who missed yesterday’s lame post,  I had a migraine yesterday.  I sought exercise as a cure:  first I drank two large glasses of Gatorade, then I ran in place on the mini-tramp.  The headache wasn’t gone, but I could live with it.

After my usual call to Mom and Dad, I wrote a few post cards.  I was puttering around getting my act together when Steven went out to brush off the cars.  We feared the winter storm had started early, but it was merely a dusting overnight.  I got outside in time to help with the brushing, then I was off to Ilion.

My mission in Ilion was to get my work shoes for the year from Melfe’s.  I will no doubt write a blog post about that; I usually do.  My plan after that was to go to Moose River Coffee for a cup of the BEST coffee.  I could sit and write while I drank it.  Alas, they were not open.  A sign in the door said they were doing a tasting at Little Falls Food Co-op.  Well, I love Little Falls Food Co-op but was not into driving to Little Falls.

As I pulled into the parking lot for Ilion Wine and Spirits, I remembered Honey Brook Hobbies.  Maybe they had coffee!  Alas (again), they did not.  I bought a few cookies, though, because they looked really good (they were; I ate one right away).  Then I went to the liquor store and got a couple of bottles.

Back home I thought I was in for the day.  After all, it was already snowing.  However, my friend Kim needed to go to the liquor store and get something to see her through the storm.  Naturally I went with her to Valley Wine and Liquor in Herkimer.  After all, I still had my bra on (do NOT say TMI!) (you know who you are).  We tasted some wine and purchased some as well (oh, don’t shake your head or your finger at me!) (or even your booty, although that would be less of a problem) (it’s not like I’m going to drink it all TONIGHT!).

I cooked a pretty good dinner (not early enough to call it supper) while we looked at a Dateline I had DVR’d a while ago (judging from the taped commercials).  Now it is over so I must find something else to watch.  I see I am over 500 words, which I call more than respectable.  If you are in the path of the storm, I hope you are hunkered down.  For all others, Happy Saturday!

 

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Can You Dig It?

Well, it is Wuss-out Wednesday today.  I got the day off work due to Winter Storm Stella (I like “winter storm” better than “nor’easter”; it makes me feel like I’m under 70 and I still have all my teeth) (was that a dreadful thing to say?  There is nothing wrong with being over 70 and toothless; I may be there myself one day) (but this is not that day).

Where was I?  Ah yes, telling you a little about my day.  The best part was going back to bed after I got up and found out all shifts were cancelled at my place of employment.  The worst part was spending over two and a half hours shoveling the driveway. However, even that had its moments.

I wanted to take some “before” pictures for this blog.  When the extent of the task became apparent, I abandoned the Tablet and just started digging.  For another reason, I was afraid the sheer whiteness of the view would make it harder to see where the snow ended.  I could barely see where the snow ended, and I was right there.

Our neighbor, who owns half the two car garage and has driveway rights, had snow-blowed a path from his half of the garage (where he keeps his snowblower) to the sidewalk.  That definitely helped, because the rest of the driveway was quite impassible.  I think he also blew out the very end of our driveway, because although it was completely filled in by the plow, it did not look as deep as other areas.  We dug and dug. I tried to keep my spirits up.

“We are bad-hyphen-ass,” I assured Steven.  Many things become more bearable if you can feel that you are bad-ass when you do them.  I paused to admire the bare trees against the grey sky.  No, I did not make it back outside to take a picture of those.  Sorry.

I sang, “High Hopes,” you know, with the verse about that little old ant who thinks he can move a rubber tree plant.  I tried to put new words and make the song about us, but I could not think of a word for “old farts” and a word for “snowbank” that rhymed.

“How you doing, honey?  How you feeling?”  I kept asking Steven.  This was not just me being silly.  People have heart attacks while shoveling snow all the time, and my husband is not a young man.  He also does not lead the healthiest of lifestyles, but perhaps I can help him improve on that.

At one point, the neighbor kids were out playing.  The boy did a cannonball off his deck into the snow.

“I wanted to do that!” I said.  Unfortunately, I did no such thing.  As we shoveled, my feet and hands were becoming more and more cold.

Finally we decided that good enough was good enough.  Both vehicles are clear enough to move, with enough space to make it to the road.  It ain’t beautiful, but it’ll do.  I hit the showers.

And almost cried when the warm water hit my toes! My thighs, which were bright red, stung like hell as well.  What a dreadful feeling!  It is good we did not take any longer than we did with our shoveling.  I do not need to lose any toes to frostbite; I need them to count to twenty!

 

Monday Misadventure

Hands up, whoever thought that with the play in production I would immediately return to making “real” posts? Heads down in shame, all of you who are pointing and laughing because you knew darn well I would not. I don’t mean you should feel ashamed because I am about to do a brilliant post about a Mohawk Valley adventure. I just don’t like it when people point and laugh.

I had thought to do a Middle-aged Musings Monday today, but a considerate co-worker brought me a copy of the new issue of Mohawk Valley Living, and I spent my lunch hour reading that instead of writing a blog post. I will instead type in a few words about the bad weather adventure I had after work today. By adventure, I’m afraid I mean misadventure.

The Mohawk Valley is having a winter storm, as is much of the northeast. It is cold and has been snowing like a sonofabitch all day (I love to say things are doing something like a sonofabitch). I suppose this made a bit of a change from the straight cold weather we have been having, but perhaps I am being too glass-half-full.

My misadventure began, as many of my misadventures do, with me thinking I am being clever. I left work and drove to my husband’s place of employment, to switch vehicles. This meant my SUV would be last in the driveway tomorrow morning, when I leave for work prior to 5 a.m. It further meant that Steven would have the 4-wheel drive for coming home after 6 p.m. After all, it was continuing to snow.

I could get the little old Stratus into the driveway. Just swing wide and power it through, right? Turns out, not so much. In my defense, I have not driven a vehicle this size since 1989, when I had a 10-year-old Pinto I fondly called Feather Car. Of course I got hung up at the end of the driveway. I felt I had a small blessing in that the car was completely out of the road at least. I turned it off, got out and grabbed a shovel.

I shoveled, tried to move the car, repeat. Things were not going well. I thought a good push would help. But there was only one of me. Then I saw my across the street neighbor shoveling his own driveway. He is a strapping young man, and a very nice one. I went over and asked his help. I wanted to ask him to drive the car while I pushed, because it is my car after all, but that seemed a little silly given our relative sizes.

He told me to back the car all the way out, which I did without getting hung up in the snowbank. Phew! He shoveled out where the car had been and told me to try it again. I felt really bad about this, because dammit, I am supposed to shovel my own driveway. Before I pulled the car back in I brushed off the windows again. I perhaps should have done that before I pulled back out of the driveway, but one does not always behave in the ideal fashion.

After my neighbor’s efforts with the shovel, I got the car in the driveway. I thanked him profusely. What a great neighbor! He asked me was I all set. I assured him that I was. I shoveled a bit more, including a short area in the back for Tabby’s business meetings.

Other areas have gotten more snow than I did. Other people have bigger driveways to shovel. Other bad weather travails outweigh mine. Other people do not have nice neighbors to help them. Well, I never said I was Job. I’m just telling you a little story about my day. I hope you’ll tune in tomorrow, which will be Tuesday but I hope not Tired Tuesday.

What’s My Problem, Anyways?

I had not meant to have a Non-Sequitur Thursday this week. I had big plans for a Mohawk Valley adventure on my way home from work. And I was going to walk my dog. Either one should have provided sufficient material for at least a short post.

And then it started to snow. Oh, I know, we Mohawk Valley residents are used to snow. We just drive on, sometimes without fully cleaning off our cars (don’t shake your finger at me; I was talking about you!). It wasn’t even supposed to be that bad. The storm was to pass NEAR us, sending us some snow, but nothing to worry about. “Enough to shovel” was the way Bill Kardas put it on WKTV News.

I had somehow gotten the impression snow was not even predicted to start until late afternoon or evening. At work, my co-worker said he thought it was supposed to start around noon. I looked out the window.

“How about ten?” I suggested, pointing. It was in fact about ten minutes before ten (I keep close track of what time it is at work). I continued to watch the snow fall all afternoon (I work facing a window).

Another co-worker arriving in the afternoon said the roads were not too bad; just a little “greasy.” I think Fats Waller said it best: Life sure ain’t easy when you’re fat and greasy (life sho’ ain’t easy when yo fat and greezy, to be more accurate).

I gave yet another co-worker a ride home prior to my adventuring. Before I dropped her off, I had put my vehicle in full 4-wheel drive and decided to go straight home. I’m still not sure why it seemed so bad. It was just a lot of snow, not even a real full-fledged storm such as we central New Yorkers weather with such tough-minded pride.

Still, I drove home slowly and was happy to be there. I went outside and shoveled what had accumulated so far. Admittedly, it was not much, and it was still coming down quite steadily. But I felt I should do something to lighten Steven’s load tomorrow. If Steven decides to shovel tomorrow. He may leave it for me on Saturday, which would be fair since he has done the lion’s share of the shoveling this winter.

Perhaps I have reached Winter Fatigue or I am suffering from that Seasonal Affective Disorder (OK, one of those I just now made up). But not to worry. We are resilient here in the Mohawk Valley. I’ll be out and doing stuff soon, snow or no snow! I’ll be sure to write about it here.