25 February 2015

We're Number Two

Boston has recorded 100 inches of snowfall this winter, almost all of it in the past month. I believe the current record is 107.6 inches in the winter of 1995-96. The difference that year was that the snow started falling pretty early in the season, and just kept falling, in more frequent but smaller storms. It was our first winter sharing our first apartment together, and our house was at the end of a dead-end street that almost never got plowed because the city classified it as a "private way" and because very few people lived on it.

The Mrs. and I kept shoveling out the area in front of the house and the piles kept getting higher as we tried to figure out where to put the snow. Eventually we started throwing it over the fence next to us, into the back yard of a house that fronted on an adjacent street. Apparently the people who lived there weren't so happy about it, but our landlord knew them and had a talk. It's not like they were using their yard in the middle of a ridiculously harsh winter, and by that point we really had nowhere else to put the snow, so things got smoothed over. The people whose driveway is behind our yard where we live now throw their snow over the fence onto our side—who cares?

Anyway, it now feels like we have turned the corner on this difficult and memorable winter. I've been able to remove the two-inch coating of ice from the sidewalk in front and a good portion of the walkways around the rest of the house. The sun has been doing some of the work for me. Temperatures have been managing to rise above 32 degrees here and there.

At the same time, there's a lingering feeling of unfinished business. As A Proper Bostonian put it to me, it feels like we need one more storm to put us over the top for the snowfall total, to secure that number one position, because after enduring all of this it will be something of a letdown if we don't. And as much as I want this winter to be over, I think I agree with her. But I haven't had to commute in any of this mess, and I haven't even ventured outside of Medford in the past couple of weeks unless I was in a car.

Update 2/26: I had written that the official snowfall measurement for 1995-96 was 107.9 inches but I subsequently found that it is 107.6, so I have corrected the number above. Also, according to Harvey Leonard during tonight's weather on WCVB, Boston has now recorded 102 inches of snow this winter, which means we are less than six inches away from breaking that record...

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