04 February 2015

Winter Notes

(I started this post last night but I was so tired from the past two days that I had to set it aside and go to sleep.)

It snowed again Monday. A lot. The TV news said we got 16" on top of last week's nearly two feet. Add in the couple of inches we got over the weekend and Boston got 40.5" of snow in one week, a new record that broke the old one by nine inches or so.

That's much more snow than people are used to dealing with in such a short span of time, and because everything is close together in our urban environment, figuring out what to do with the cleared snow is a challenge. The drifts get pretty high, as you can see.
Sidewalk in front of our house
Late in the morning on Monday the snow slowed down for a while, so I decided I wanted to get going on the shoveling. I knew I'd have to go out again the next day and re-shovel but it's better than having to deal with all of it at once. These storms have also been more challenging because it's been colder than normal and the winds have been strong.

I was able to follow the areas I had dug out last week, though this time the windblown drifting went against me and there was a lot more on the driveway side of the house. I was getting near the end of the driveway and dreading the task of clearing it when our next-door neighbor appeared from around the corner with his snow blower and proceeded to clear the whole thing for me. What would have taken me probably 90 minutes he was able to do in less than 10, which was a huge relief. I really need to see about getting my blower working again...
Driveway results
Yesterday morning we woke up to temperatures of around 4, and we quickly realized that our heat was not working. It had been the night before; we called the HVAC people and it turned out to be a thermal coupling, which is a relatively quick fix. Apparently they can just fail randomly, which is not exactly reassuring.

Yesterday I had to go out to the post office because I had sold two items on eBay. Getting to Medford Square wasn't a big deal, though the walk to the bus stop was tricky because of the variation in shoveling effort by the residents of our neighborhood. Coming back I was the victim of a bus delay that lasted almost an hour; eventually a bus appeared in a spot that isn't an actual bus stop, and a T employee who had also been waiting for the same bus realized it was the one all of us were waiting for and alerted everyone to cross the street and get on it. I haven't had to go into the city, and with the problems the T has been having I'm relieved.
Remember how this looked last week?
I entertained the idea of going to the Patriots parade for about five seconds. It is somewhat warmer today, about normal for this time of year, but with the huge piles of snow on the sidewalks I don't know where anyone is going to stand, and it also means the sidewalks are going to be more congested and it will be harder to move around, and trying to take the T is such a disaster at this point, so I'm just watching it on TV.

The forecast is calling for a small amount of snow tomorrow—lucky us. Beyond that it appears another storm is heading for us Sunday night into Monday. This winter had me fooled, with no snow of any significance until two-thirds of the way through January. Now it seems the weather is trying to make up for that lack of earlier snow.

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