Monday, January 19, 2009

Some snow, but all too brief

I enjoyed watching the snow come down, but it didn't last. I remember in the 60's (going by memory and nothing else), it snowed a couple of times every winter and at least one snowstorm was pretty hefty, over 4 inches. I can recall big piles of snow plowed up in the schoolyard of Mt. Vernon Elementary 1 (or the white Elementary school, pre-integration -- it's the volunteer fire department now.). The snow lasted through the 70's. I almost got stuck sometime in the late 70's and plowed my old Monte Carlo into the yard until it stopped. I can remember watching Richard Murray spinning his car around in the Ella Fitzgerald Center parking lot one year also. '79 was a bad snow year. I was working for Chesapeake Plywood (or subcontracting through Carlton Windsor) and we were down to Belle Haven Virginia loading lumber barges in the snow. They had a bucket of burning pitch to keep us warm. Didn't help. What helped was the chain on the Hyster machine that picked up the logs breaking right near the big hook that the loops of steel cable went through. We had a harrowing ride though almost whiteout conditions for over a hour until I got back to Princess Anne. Nobody went anywhere for a couple of days after that.
Since then, snows got leaner, except for a really nasty one in the early 80's that had a wind chill around -50, and one in the late 80's when I ended up in a ditch (though not too bad. A fellow pulled me out and all I needed was to clean the carpeting where a little bit of water got in. 70 degree Thanksgivings are more the norm than the exception now, and we just don't get the big snowstorms anymore. It's good because they are hazardous, but kids around here don't get the kind of Christmases I had when I was little.
Well, tomorrow is Inauguration Day. Over 2 million people in DC. Not me. I hate driving around DC in normal conditions. I am hoping that the good will shown by both sides so far (at least publicly) will linger a while and that the only people who remain on the opposition are, as Michael Chertoff, the Republican Director of Homeland Security said, racists, the disturbed, and those with an axe to grind. Good luck President Obama. You will need it.
The cold is making my hands hurt, so its a short post tonight, kiddies. Please visit Your Humble Scribe another day.

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