Thawing out

by Bill - 2010-02-01 - in culture / writing / blog


Hopefully. It snowed a good 5-6 inches Friday in and around Nashville. It wasn't good snowman/snowball snow, though. Not in our neighborhood, anyway. It was too crusty because of the freezing rain that came after the snow. It made for great sledding, though, which Elizabeth and I spent several hours doing over the past few days.

The pugs hate the snow. The past two nights now, with the temperature only briefly rising above freezing on Sunday afternoon, the sidewalks and grassy areas are still covered completely by this crusty snow. There's just nowhere for a pug to poop. I had to rake out some of the snow in the back yard to create some grassy areas for them to go.

But enough about that. Now it's Monday morning, and we're looking forward to it being sunny and above 40F later today. I could have let today's sun do this for me, but I decided yesterday to go ahead and clear the snow off the driveway. It took my elderly neighbor just a few minutes to do what I'd been working on twice as long. I think my driveway is a bit bigger than his, but that's no excuse. I was using a garden rake and regular shovel. The key to his success was his snow shovel. Once he proved his superiority, with his wife looking on, unsmiling, he loaned me his snow shovel. As I told my other neighbor, Troy, it's amazing what a difference the right tool makes. Troy then borrowed it and did the same to his driveway.

Our street is on a hill. We're the first house on the right, going up the hill, so days like these are not too bad for us. For those at the top of the hill, however, it's sometimes impossible to get up and over. One such neighbor, who has a Boston Terrier — that's how dog owners identify other dog owners — made at least two attempts. At the time, Elizabeth and I were out on the driveway. I was clearing it, she was trying to build a snowman at the edge of it. A couple of times I had to tell her to come back to the safety of the porch in case any cars coming down the hill lost control and plowed into our yard. Anyway, this one Boston Terrier neighbor finally, after two failed attempts, sat and waited at the bottom of the hill for the sun to do its work and let a few cars better-equipped for the snow than his small sedan loosen up the ice for him. Finally, after about twenty minutes, he tried again, gunning it in front of our house where the ice was mostly melted. This time he made it, with a few neighbors like me looking on, rooting for him. A few minutes after that, his neighbor came down to get his SUV that he'd left parked at the bottom of the hill the day before. I missed it, but he apparently made it up the hill just fine, too.

Elizabeth did finally make a snowman, but she had to recruit Tara for the job. Tara wisely suggested trying it in the back yard because the sun had been shining there longer and softening up the snow, making that area much better for snowman building. Sure enough, twenty minutes later, Elizabeth came running out to tell me to look at their snowman. I got video of her in front of it, but I think Tara has already posted a picture of it on her blog, Tara's Favorites.



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