Monday, February 23, 2009

Damn that Groundhog

The weather crew over to Channel 6 have been screwin the pooch and blowing it this last last week or so. Last week, they started off just fine. Predicted 6 to 10 inches of snow and we got about 8 inches, maybe 9 inches. I would say they nailed it.

However, the next day, I awoke to another 6 inches of snow. Really pissed now, I turn on the morning news and Kevin Mannix is all shuffling his feet and you could tell he was having a tough time looking me in the eye. "Sorry about that, this one caught us by surprise. We really thought it was only going to flurry". Mumbling something hateful and probably illegal in at least a few states, I walked downstairs and for the second day in a row pulled on my snow removal uniform and prepared to one more time find the driveway if I could. "Flurries, my ass. You loser overpaid ......." And my hate of all weathermen sustained me in my early morning struggle to clear a path so my darling could go on her merry way.

Our weather folks are more often than not fairly accurate with what they see coming our way. What with all the high falutin help they got. Satellites, Sonar, Zonar, Gondar, jeez, I don't know what they are called, but they have all sorts of hi tech wizardry that lets them know more information than I care to know. Tell me if it is going to snow, rain, or be clear. A rough idea of how much snow is helpful. But telling us we are going to get slammed is key.

Starting last Friday, all the weathermen, still smarting from being caught with their weatherman pants down, are very quick and on the ball warning us of the snow I woke up to this morning. They gave us plenty of notice. The spiffy map they put up with snowfall amounts in the various areas did not waver one inch right up to post time. I went about my business last night as usual knowing I could expect no more than 8 inches of snow, and more likely only 4 or 5 inches.

About 9:00 PM, we lost power. No big deal, happens two or three times each winter. Pull out the candles, the kerosene lamps, check the sump hole for no good reason because whatever happens happens, and then go to bed early. Internet, TV and any other electrical devices used in the late evenings are no longer accessible.

Since I actually passed out before midnight, my body dutifully woke me up around 3:30 AM. It has decided that any more than 4 hours is a luxury I should not have anymore. So I wake up. In a half awake daze I don't notice the snow on the windows as I stumble to the kitchen for some dry mouth relief. Secure some water and walk to the front door just to check on the progress of the snow fall. I open the door and damn, had to be 20 to 24 inches of new snow clogging the walk. The wind is blowing waves of white out by like a strobe light. And it's cold standing there in bare feet on the stone porch probably looking as dumb as I felt.

Living in paradise I guess has some down sides on occasion. No matter what paradise you care to live in. I know this and am usually right tolerant of the price Mother Nature extracts from us for giving us such a wonderful place to live. But come on. It's February, late-ish February. And in the last 5 days we have had 34" at the least of the white crap. By this time of the season, I am mentally already planting a garden, riding my bike without studs, or dreaming of swatting black flies. Spending what will be at least a five hour snow removal chore in the morning is not what I wanted out of my Monday. I guess it doesn't matter what I want. It's what Mother Nature wants. One more incontrovertible proof that we are not the masters of our domain.

Keep it 'tween the Ditches........

(698 / 17647)


Demeur said...

The weather guys around here have it pretty easy. They just predict rain all the time and when it doesn't rain nobody cares. We figure that's just a bonus. Only had one snow storm that they missed in the early 90s. We did get socked pretty good in December but they were on it.
So what do you do for heat when the power goes out?

MRMacrum said...

Demeur - The house holds it's heat fairly well. Without using any heat source, we are good for 2 or 3 days anyway. But I do have two fireplaces and a wood furnace I can fire up if needed. This time we were only out for about 28 hours or so.

Dawn on MDI said...

We got about a foot up here - wet, heavy stuff. Nasty, nasty business. Hate those weather guys.

BBC said...

More than 127,000 utility customers in Maine remained without electricity Monday evening after wet, heavy snow snapped tree limbs, power lines and utility poles.

I came over to asked if you had some wood heat, it's good that you do in that country.

Make some LED lights and you pretty much have it made in bad weather, even if you have to put the fridge outside.

I haven't seen snow like that for 12 years, and I'm thankful for that.

El Cerdo Ignatius said...

Demeur: The weather guys around here have it pretty easy. They just predict rain all the time and when it doesn't rain nobody cares.


Kulkuri said...

I have lived most of my life north of the 45th paralel, so that business of the groundhog has never meant anything to me. I never can remember which means an early spring and which is six more weeks of winter because usually six more weeks is an early spring.

Side question, when did Mainiacs become Mainers?? I think the Air Guard unit at Bangor is still called the Mainiacs. Last time I was there I got one of their decals to put on my toolbox.

MRMacrum said...

Dawn on MDI - A foot of coast snow? I think that's worse than 20" of what we got. Ours was packed hard, but it blew okay once I got a tunnel going.

BBC - We have plenty of lights. I have LED bike lights we use also. One I keep strapped to my forehead. I turn it on strobe and chase the critters around the house. They really freak out.

El Cerdo Ignatius - I am reminded of a weather man who did his thing out in Phoenix. I was there in the 1970s passing through with a tour. All of a sudden one of those once every 50 years rains came down and flooded much of the valley. The weather guy missed in his prediction. He said some rain, but not the 2 or 3 inches they got. He received death threats.

Kulkuri - Yeah we have never had an early spring either. Our elevation ensures that. If we get 10 inches of snow, 8 miles away they might see 4" or none at all. I just get tired of the routine this time every year. And lately it seems we are seeing more snow more often and later in the season than we used to. Looks to be another 100 inch plus year.

We've gone PC I guess. I still use the term Mainiacs, but on my blog I figure not many folks would get it. So you are a Yooper? Bet you have had your fill of the white stuff. How do you like it in the South?

Randal Graves said...

Have you thought about building your own Doppler Five Thousand! system and placing it on your roof?

A Midnight Rider said...

Not that far away from you and it's been a very mild February. Precipitaion has been primarily rain and the temps never get below 20.

Kulkuri said...

White stuff, less than 300 inches is a mild winter, over 400 is pushing into record territory. I know about elevation adding to the amount of snowfall. My place UP on the tundra is about 1000-1100 ft above Lake Superior so the clouds will dump their stuff on the high ground and down by the lake won't get anything.

The lack of snow in the south doesn't make up for the other disadvantages.

Gary ("Old Dude") said...

being new to the Temecula area, I am somewhat at a loss on being able to judge the weather---today, it will be close to 75, with clear blue skies and white puffy clouds, off to the east of us is Mount San Gorgonio, with snow all over it, a very postcardish view. In fact think I will pour myself a cup of coffee and go out on the patio and enjoy it.