Saturday, December 20, 2008

Hey ho, the wind and the snow (and the snow, it's snowing every day)

We've got a bit of snow, and we're supposed to prepare for more snow this weekend. I'm not worried about the snow, but I am a bit uneasy about the windstorms predicted. Two years ago, we stayed with some friends when the power went out, but temperatures weren't below freezing. This is one of the times in which I am really glad to be in the city. Yesterday, when I helped push someone's car up a hill (the driver had to turn around anyway, but at least he got moving), I remembered the times in my childhood when hunters' trucks would get stuck on our snowy, unpaved mountain road. The family would be snowbound, too, and we wouldn't know when we'd next be able to make the trip into town for groceries. Fortunately, we had a deep freezer plus canned produce.

All this is not to romanticize my childhood. Far from it! I longed for the day when I would see paved roads outside my house. This morning, those roads are covered with ice under snow. Even though many businesses had closed and I couldn't drive out for my Friday morning gig, I was prepared to walk up the hill with my guitar and felt board to our local library branch to perform this morning. Last night, I got a call from the children's librarian that the gig would have to be postponed. No matter. For a brief time, I was on the Seattle Public Library homepage, and I have the screen captures to prove it:

Metro bus service has been suspended in a number of areas. It's really frustrating for people who have to go to work. The article Metro still scrambling as riders grow frustrated, by Ruth Teichroeb, documents one driver whose approach I appreciated:

One Route 18 driver did his best to entertain passengers Friday morning, singing the children's song "The Wheels on the Bus" and referring to the storybook "The Little Engine that Could."

"I think I can, I think I can, I think I can," the driver chanted, inching up a steep stretch of Mercer Street on Lower Queen Anne.

You may think, "Well, that could get old really quickly," but consider that that driver's first priority was to keep his focus on the road. I find it challenging to come up with something original when I'm not dealing with adverse weather conditions and my daughter is demanding, "Tell me a story!" on the way to school. I won't do it, but I will sing simple songs with lots of repetition.


Lone Star Ma said...

Brrr. The idea of snow is magical here, but I wouldn't really want to live in a place where there was a real possibility, for a significant portion of the year, that you could die because of the cold if you happened to get stuck in the wrong circumstances . It sounds scary. And I really worry about the homeless people who live in really cold places - what do they do?

Of course, I expect that cold environs have all sorts of safety plans in place that we don't even think of down here.

Beth Kephart said...

Keep safe. Keep warm.

And what a thrill to see you front and center!

Vivian said...

Oh, I'm so sorry your gig was postponed. But happy that you're safe and sound at home. I'm continually impressed with all you do to help others--pushing someone's car up a hill in the storm! You are a gem.

Saints and Spinners said...

Vivian: Thanks! And I really didn't do all that much-- there were two other people pushing it, and I just gave them a hand. Really, no one should have been driving out there without chains or four-wheel drive (or both?).

Beth: Thanks! It was a kicky moment, definitely.

LSM: The homeless shelters are working to accomodate all of the overflow. You probably know this already, but a lot of homeless people come to Seattle because it's usually such an easy climate in which to be homeless. Then, when we get snow and temperatures like this, it's pretty hard. And you've got to deal with hurricanes! I don't miss hurricanes.

Lone Star Ma said...

See, I can't think of it as mild because it barely ever freezes here at all. Occasionally, for a couple of hours, but more than that scarcely ever. We wore short sleeves yesterday!
Look at you on that website! Woo hoo!

TadMack said...

Can't BELIEVE you guys are getting such amazingly bad-good weather! Cali is freezing cold -- brrr. Glad you're home safe and warm, even though no gig...

adrienne said...

I *love* that bus driver.

Is the weather better there now? We're inundated with snow and cold these last several days in WNY, but I guess we should be used to it. I should take some photos, though. The piles next to my driveway have become most impressive.

Saints and Spinners said...

LSM: Short sleeves in December? I can only dream.

Adrienne: The snow melted a little today, but we're supposed to get MORE tomorrow or Wednesday. Enough already! At my mom's recommendation, I ordered a grain shovel to use for shoveling a number of things including snow-- I like it that there's a versatile shovel out there. A snow shovel isn't much use here for most of the year.

Lone Star Ma said...

Stay warm!