Sunday, February 16, 2014

Snow Shock

People around here are snow-shocked. After a winter of more cold and snow than any previous winter anyone can remember, people don’t want to see any more snow. The snow is unavoidable if you look out the window or step out the door, so people are trying to avoid windows and doors when they can.

This is more easily done now than at any time in the past. E-commerce makes it possible to avoid shopping trips. With modern communications we can stay in touch and be entertained without any need for windows or doors. Some of us can even work that way.

I can tell the Narnia-style winter is taking its toll on people because of the reaction to yesterday’s storm. This came after two epic storms in two weeks. First, there was an overnight snow and ice storm in which everyone lost power for an average of two days. Then, a week later, a 27-hour snowstorm that left us with an additional foot of snow. For the most part, people took those two storms in stride. Yesterday afternoon, by contrast, was only a light snowstorm, and it was something of a surprise. Forecasters were able to predict it only a few hours in advance. It left one inch of snow on some towns and three inches on others. Somehow that was the snowflake that broke the camel’s back. Mostly people did not shovel this new snow from the sidewalks. The forecast suggested it would melt away when the weather changed on Tuesday anyway. Never mind that the forecast has changed and the thaw is now expected on Wednesday after a new snowfall on Tuesday.

After three months of colder-than-normal weather reports, what difference is one more day of snow? Let me know when the sun is shining and the flowers are blooming. In the meantime, I have to get back to my Brazilian Portuguese vocabulary exercises — you know, just in case I actually make it to Rio someday.