Let it snow, let it snow

Let it snow, let it snow

I bailed out of work early today to beat the forecast snow storm. The weather service predicted that by noon today snow would start falling and soon after it would be coming down at a rate of 1 to 2 inches per hour, creating whiteout conditions during the heart of the evening commute. Since I didn’t want to (a) be stuck sleeping in my office overnight or (b) stuck in a snowbank on the side of the highway overnight, I left early and made it home just as the snow started piling up. We can expect 6-10 inches tonight.

New Englanders are funny about snow. For the first few storms of the season, they follow a particular pattern. The forecast of the storm comes in a few days before and people go into contingency mode: They rush off to the grocery store to buy milk and bread and eggs and bottled water (and, let’s be honest, soda and snacks and sugary cereal) and then off to the hardware store to buy shovels (what happened to the old ones?), salt, and snow blowers. Parking lots get jammed and the local news stations fill their broadcasts with images of empty shelves and packed checkout lines.

Of course, the same people are heard telling one another, “You’d think no one around here ever saw snow,” creating an amusing melange of the herd mentality and hard-nosed cynical Yankee grit.

Meanwhile, folks will still drive out into the storm as if it were a sunny July afternoon, so confident in their four-wheel drive and “superior” driving ability that they speed along the interstates at 70 mph, never realizing that four-wheel drive means four wheels spinning ineffectively. The other day, when we had bad icing on the roads, people were flying around at high speed and the news was full of reports of spin outs and roll overs.

So, we’re holed up here in our warm little apartment, watching the snow fall and the cars inch along the main road outside, looking forward to the hot chocolate we’ll make after I shovel the walks and driveway later. Now, if only we had a fireplace…

Written by
Domenico Bettinelli
2 comments
  • thanks for a glimpse of winter from a yankee perspective. We tried to live in Iowa once & made it for a year before we had to high-tail it back to the sunny south. I never got the hang of worrying about the weather all the time & it was discouraging to hear the locals say they never got used to the winters either & they hated it more every year!

  • Reading about “contingency mode” and the items stocked up (sugary cereal and soda!) made me think of a news special I saw one time about Wal-Mart’s computer system (second only in capacity and skill to NORAD, I believe) tracking purchased items and planning for demand…they discovered that when they announced hurricane warnings, people stocked up on Strawberry PopTarts!  Weird…comfort food, maybe?

    Be safe in the snow!

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