Wednesday, February 7, 2007

First snow

Our first snow of consequence fell Tuesday, accompanied by the continuing, now-infamous "Arctic chill" embracing the Midwest. We received about 7 inches on the southside of Indy, and while the light snow was a blessing for shovelers, it was a nightmare for commuters. Snow fell between 11 a.m. and 5 a.m. and the interstate for most of the afternoon were dubbed "unusable." That didn't stop me. I used one to get home, though it took from 3:30-5. Made it safe at an average speed of about 20 mph, sometimes reaching about 35 mph. Came home to shovel.

Of course, complications arose at every turn. My usual handy icescraper went missing, and I had to use a combo tool of the older, flimsy wooden one and my gloved hand. Then, the rearwindow defogger apparently is unconnected, so my rear vision was icy and ultimately blinded on the long drive home. To shovel snow, I changed clothes and discovered my winter hats are all gone, along with the heavy down coat I once owned, and my sole hooded sweatshirt had been left in the washer and was quite soaked. So, I ventured out with a makeship snow-shoveling outfit that included a purple headband belonging to my wife - neighbors loved it, I'm sure.

Anyhow, the highlight of the day was arriving home to the scene outside. As some may know, we live next to a small pond - one of many in our neighborhood. Well, a white work van had apparently skidded from the road, up the curb and down onto the iced-over water. I arrived home about 5 p.m. to see four Hispanic workmen out in front of the van on the ice, trying to push the van up a steep, 10-foot drop. A neighbor and I laughed, but also voiced concern about them breaking through. Fire and police arrived shortly after as I changed clothes and prepared to start shoveling. News photographers and other passerbys stopped by, some using my driveway to park while taking photos. I took some of my own, of course, especially with a closeup of the "No swimming or wading" sign and the truck in the immediate background. Here's one of them. And another from the front porch.

Towtrucks arrived and dragged the van up from the pond about the time we finished shoveling as the sun was nearing its path down. We've decided that it might be wise to investigate sometype of wooden fence to mark the waters around the neighborhood - nothing to hinder first responders, but enough to at least mark the boundaries and offer caution to those unfamilar with where the waters may lie underneath blanketing snow.

And, it's time to invest in winter attire again...

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