We made it back from Virginia with hours to spare before the anticipated winter storm began. First, if you’re not a native New Englandah, you might not appreciate the term “nor’eastah”. According to Wiki, “A nor'easter (also northeaster) is a macro-scale cyclone. The name derives from the direction of the strongest winds—as an offshore air mass rotates counterclockwise, winds tend to blow northeast-to-southwest over the region covered by the northwest quadrant of the cyclone.” In other words, it’s a wicked big stawm.
I remember nor’easters as a kid … the snow accumulation was taller than me . Of course, I was a bit shorter then. Accumulation from this recent storm ranged between 12-16” … much more in areas of drifting and the huge piles after the plows went by were indeed, almost taller than me.
We did not, however, refer to nor’easters as winter cyclones nor bombs, they were simply big snowstorms. (Thank you, Myrle, for agreeing with me!) And when did they start naming winter storms? It must have happened while we were away. This one is called Grayson (the same as our grand-nephew); the last one was Frankie. Really? A storm by the name of Frankie? Come on! The meteorologists were all over it … a perfect storm kind of event. We kept the local TV news station on all day with weather updates and blizzard footage … exciting stuff.
So what does one do during a nor’easter? Well, there’s adult beverages earlier in the day than normal. We opted for hot cider with rum (yum!) . There’s the usual internet stuff as long as the cable lasted. It fluttered on and off all day. There’s game-playing, of which we did lots … cribbage and speed scrabble topped the list and with adult beverages served early and often, the games turned out more interesting than usual.
Less appealing, but necessary, is the shoveling … one of my least favorite activities. No, Lin does not own a snowblower. We bundled up warmly and headed out into the snowy malestrom. It was hard to open the outside door as the snow had drifted against it. The wind took our breath away and burned as icy snow whipped into our faces. Accumulated snow fell like an avalanche from evergreen branches onto our heads with each gust of wind.
With so much snow, there wasn’t much area to pile it, so we’d load up our shovels and walk what seemed like a half-mile to deposit it on a huge snowbank. Repeat … repeat ... and repeat the process! What a pleasant way to spend the afternoon … at least it was aerobic! We were sweating by the time we completed the first round of snow removal. When we looked back at the front walk, it was covered again by at least another ½ – 1” of that white stuff. We laughed halfheartedly when we realized this was only the beginning of January and there was much more winter to come. There would be three rounds of shoveling and clean-up by the time the storm ended. David and I will hopefully be heading to the warm by the next snow dousing.
Poor Blue was totally socked in for awhile until we could get him dug out. He looked cold, but he’s a hardy guy and will probably be no worse for the wear. All that cold and snow builds character … for all of us!