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So far so good. by Leah Jean
So far the weather hasn't affected me too badly. The temperature has been hovering around the freezing point for the last few weeks during the day which is making for interesting precipitation. The 2nd major "snow" of the season was pretty wet. So it stuck to everything. It was very beautiful since all of the trees, houses, power lines, etc. were covered with a good layer of snow and ice. But, of course, it caused a lot of damage. I was looking out the night it happened admiring the pristine whiteness but then noticed something that looked like a serpent's head sticking out a few feet on the road. Took me a few seconds to realize it was the end of a large branch. Then I noticed there were a lot of "serpents" all over the area. My backyard also had a few major branches from mine and the neighbor's trees litering my yard. When the trucks plowed the road, the road edges were also litered with branches. And talk about the electric companies having fun ... not! During the evening while it was snowing I heard one big kapow when the neighborhood transformer blew. That was a sound I was not at all surprised to hear. But I did hear other sounds like muffled gunshots periodically. Later figured out that those must have been branches cracking.

And the electricity kept switching off and on about once every half hour. I was watching one "on demand" show on T.V. that was probably in the last 10 minutes when the T.V. got turned off. And unfortunately when I tried to run it again, the show didn't resume at the place where it died before so I ran around doing housework while it played almost all the way thru again. Came back to watch the show again and it was probably within about the last FIVE minutes when the electricity went out again! Argh! It was good that nobody was around to hear my language! At that point I gave up.

Really have been seeing the electric company trucks out and about lately. Passed a couple of groups of them where some very large broken branches were leaning very heavily on power lines. Heard on the news that they couldn't get the "buckets" (a.k.a. cherry pickers) out the first day of the snow because the wind gusts were up to 40 mph. Gave me a new respect for the work that those guys do. It looked very dangerous.

Traffic was having all kinds of trouble too. Heard that one highway had a couple of semi's jackknife due to the slick surfaces. It took up to 9 hours to clean up the mess and some people going home from work were stuck out there the whole time! One news team was stuck out there reporting on the mess. Bet a lot of "yellow snow" was being created around those vehicles during the night. ;) Another big mess was Washington D.C. I heard that a massive water main blew and shot a huge amount of water sky high into the air which sent one car flying. Then the water flowed over 495 which is the main highway that circles around the city. Rush hour traffic was brough to a complete stop because the water turned into a large sheet of ice. Wonder how long that took to be cleared up!

I stayed home the next day from work to clear off my driveway. Could have made it into work but I knew that I would be very tired after clearing the 7" to 9" off my double wide driveway. Of course, I had to over do it and also cleared off the back patio and steps. Then I had to go around to the large crepe myrtle and dog wood trees that were bent over double with snow. At least the dogwood seemed undamaged as the branches sprang back up from the ground but the crepe myrtle had one major branch broken. Oh well. I will probably have to wait until spring to clean up the messes. But there are predictions for more nasty snow this week so I'm keeping my fingers crossed about the electricty staying on. And the neighbors do have a pretty large pile of logs ... a good portion of which came from my apple tree that croaked last year so I use the logs (my heat is electric). Just hope the snow doesn't get reeeeeeal deep. Unfortunately snow melts pretty slowly this time of year.

So now that the weather pretty much precludes outdoor work ... except when clearing snow ... I have been spending more time on the house. I was sooooo proud of myself this weekend. Went and bought a "home entertainment center" (you don't use the term "stero system" anymore) and set it up. Fortunately they have gotten somewhat easier to put together. But this entailed buying a flat screen T.V., audio system (CD player, radio tuner, surround sound speakers, etc.), and T.V. table. Besides having to lift all of those boxes out of the car into the house, unpack them, and put all the stuff together, I also had to return the first table because it was flawed and get another one. Ya know ... I'm pretty stinkin' tired right now!!! But, oh, it feels good. :)

The reason I had to buy all this stuff was because I'd discovered a new place to get DVDs ... the local library down the street. And they have a whole section on BBC productions. I'm in hog heaven! All for free! As long as you get them back on time, that is. ;) So far so good. And after buying all the new equipment, being cheap is good. Been checking out DVDs such as "Dr. Who", "Life on Mars", "Riley Ace of Spies", "Jane Eyre", old classic mysteries, dramas, etc. Some shows and series I saw on PBS back years ago and so wanted to see again. The main reason I bought a new T.V. with sound system is because I have a hard time understanding the people in some of these shows. Especially the ones with strong Scottish and Irish accents. But it finally dawned on me that DVD players have a really wonderful option: subtitles. NOW I AM IN HOG HEAVEN! But there's still one more problem. The series "Life on Mars" is set back in the older days in a police precinct. It is a wonderful series with a kind of SciFi twist. But talk about slang! Even subtitles can't help with that. :) [BTW, the language and action can get pretty raunchy at times too so it isn't for the faint of heart.]

So now I say, "Bring on the snow!" because I'm happy.

As long as the electricity doesn't go out, that is. ;)

So far so good.


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