Winter started late here, around December 15th, but when it started, it opened up the gates with vengeance. The day before it snowed the first 18 inches in one dump, I had a “niggle” to get straw down on the roses. I did that, spending hours banking roses and other perennials. That night, bam, eighteen inches of white stuff, then plunging mercury to the tune of -7 degrees. I shoveled the snow from the driveway onto the straw I’d set, and just in time, because then came the wind at 45 mph, with bursts to 60, all from the Northeast — bitter with wind chills to -45. Wow. And, uncannily, it kept throwing down snow, though typical of cold, bitter weather, it was relatively light in accumulation with very little water in it — light to shovel.
This cold weather lasted a solid week and a half. Then it warmed up and snowed some more — warm at 20 degrees, mind. And it’s kept right on snowing and snowing and snowing. We’ve had a good, solid five feet that has compressed itself down to about three and a half feet when one day it had the audacity to warm up above 34 and RAIN — yes, rain — and load what was down with water, decreasing height and increasing weight dramatically. Then it was back to more snow, snow, snow…and it is STILL snowing.
Last winter we had record breaking snows of eight feet down here in the valley. This year we are well on our way to the same sort of volume, and it all has to be shoveled or blown. Which is what I’ve been doing to three places since December 15th.
And the new snow blower? Ariens, no less? Very expensive, to say the least? And supposed to be a top of the line heavy duty commercial machine? HAH!!! I does fine with the light stuff, but bogs to hell and gone with anything that resembles N. Idaho normal snow. Blasted thing was obviously designed for California suburbanites — paved drives, once in ten years snow accumulations of one inch, and wowy-zowy, see how pretty I can do it. Here? Ah, nope. I spend more time wrestling it out of trying to climb over itself as it bogs and upends its front end, or digs its wheels down and stalemates itself. Ugly. And I paid how much for this monster? *Sigh*
I’m getting very, very tired.