Saturday, January 4, 2014

Waiting For The Snow

As I write this, supposedly a huge snowstorm is on its way. If it's anything less than the Blizzard of '78, I will be disappointed. Now THAT was a snowstorm. It happened a long time ago, and I can't remember if anything bad was predicted. The only things I can remember is I think my dad was on a business trip, and was due to return, and my mother had a week of vacation coming. Plus, my Lhasa Apso dog, Fluffy, was about to have puppies. We kept all four of the surviving dogs and named them Melissa, Ginger, Roddy and Jones (after Caldwell Jones). They were mutts personified; I don't know if anyone else in the world had Pekingese/Poodle/Beagle/Lhasa Apso puppies, but they were great.

This is Ginger. She resembled her dad, Ruffles, the most.

Melissa. Originally her name was Chewy, short for Chewbacca.

From left: Roddy, Jones (Jonesy) Melissa (Chewy) and Ginger on our picnic table.

The blizzard was something to behold. There was a drift that bisected our back yard, and it was taller than the clothesline. My brother dug a tunnel not quite the length of it, and I remembered playing in it for quite a while. That winter, I was homeschooled for health reasons, like everyone else, I got a week's worth of vacation. I remember my mother's fury when my brother, who went to the grocery store, returned without cigarettes. She went out into the snow to get them. You do not want to be in the house with someone going through a nicotine fit.

Everyone seemed like they were home. I know my mother had vacation, but I can't remember if my dad did. I wish I had more pictures of the blizzard. I know I had to have taken a few, but I don't know where they are right now.

So when snowstorms are predicted nowadays, I pretty much yawn. Tons of drama, and rumors abound. I heard we were going to get six inches of snow. Well, I heard eight to twelve inches. No, I heard two feet! We usually end up with two inches, and four days later, the temperature zooms up to 40 degrees, the sun comes out and it all melts, leaving the landscape a soggy, muddy mess.

I lived through the Blizzard of '78. Unless the snow they are predicting is equal to or worse than that, I won't be impressed. I'll go into work tomorrow, and I don't have to work the rest of the week, so if "Snopocolypse 2014" happens Sunday night, I'll sit back and watch, and read comments on Facebook.

But as I think back to the Blizzard of '78, I have to admit, I'm misting up a bit. I'm sad. Back then, the house had people in it and something always seemed to be going on. We had the television going on, and I remember some of the local news personalities were broadcasting for hours on end. I think WFFT started running a slew of movies during that time; they were broadcasting 24 hours a day. Our little neighborhood was covered in tons of snow, and to a child's eyes, it was the storm you'd always prayed for. Talk about snow days!

The fact that the blizzard happened nearly 36 years ago is sobering. It doesn't seem possible that I'm middle aged, and the parents I loved so much are gone, and I'm still in the same house. And I've got to end this post, because right now I'm crying.

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