Wednesday, April 10, 2013

In the wake of winter storm Walda

"Mad" as in half a bubble off, not angry.
This morning, I feel deep gratitude to the inventors, produces and purveyors of sweater tights. Also high on my list is the first person, deep in the mists of history, who decided to turn a rabbit inside out and make a hat of it. This was a morning for the thrifted mad bomber hat.

Winter storm Walda has come and gone. Per the National Weather Service, it looks like Cheyenne got 9 inches of snow on the dot between April 8 and April 9. With the accompanying wind, that translates to 4 feet in spots at a friend's house and a trace on our north-facing sidewalk. The front steps are situated perfectly to catch the drifts, hence pre-office shoveling so the mailman doesn't end up consulting an orthopedic surgeon. Spent some time hacking at packed snow with an old hockey stick blade so the garage door would close, too.

Daffodils that may or may not survive
Other parts of the state were hit harder. Sinks Canyon reported 28.5 inches of snow.

 I suppose I could grumble more, but snow always gives me hope. Snow is sitting at the kitchen table in 4th grade listening to WHIO radio, hoping to hear school called off or at least delayed. It's snow forts and angels and avoiding snowball fights since I always lost and didn't like getting pummeled. It's snatching icicles off the neighbor's garages, pretending we're jewel thieves.

 Snow is arriving at Denali National Park in Alaska my one summer up there. It's the first winter living in Utah, learning how to ski. I'm probably the only person in town who's a little disappointed when they plow the surface streets, as it kills the base for cross-country skiing.

Snow is the moisture that we desperately need here to fill the reservoirs and stave off drought.

 This storm was timed perfectly and was just bad enough that there was no snow day or snow morning, just an unpleasant experience getting to work. They did give up and send at least some of us home mid-afternoon as the city started shutting down. College closed. City offices closed. Library and stores locking the doors, waiting until the wind and snow died down. And the cold. It was so cold.

 The author Margaret Coel told me a New York editor once called her questioning her inclusion of an April blizzard in one of her books. That couldn't be right, could it? Oh yes, it could.

 So thank goodness for warm clothing. And a special shout out to the rabbit who gave his life to keep my ears warm this morning.

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