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Dear School

The Great Digging Out

So we got a little snow. 

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Twenty-seven and a half inches of snow, to be exact, which piled up in massive drifts thanks to the blustery, blizzardy winds. And on our driveway, over and over, until we finally gave up on shoveling.

("I like how far back the house sits from the road," I said, once upon a time.)

Luckily, unlike LAST TIME, ALL THE OTHER TIMES, we did not lose power. Or water or cable or wifi or even our damn minds. Yellow House withstood the onslaught and kept us warm and dry and Xboxed and jacuzzi tubbed, And we thank you, Yellow House, but oh dear God next year we're buying a snow blower.

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Our cul de sac is about evenly split right now between the original owners who bought during the 90s, and new families like us, who all moved in over the past year or so. And who were all experiencing our first real snow all over our nice new houses and big fat driveways and winding front sidewalks, armed with shovels, while the other half of the houses were firing up gasoline-powered snow throwers and nodding at us like, "welcome to the deep 'burbs, city slickers."

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At one point I took a shovel out back to clear Ceiba a small bathroom patch under the deck, right outside the basement door. Which only opens from the inside, a feature I remembered the instant it blew shut behind me. Wonderful. I knocked and banged and yelled for awhile before giving up and attempted to wade my way across the backyard and up the deck stairs, sinking and tripping and gasping through thigh-high deep snow. By the time I made it to the kitchen door (where my entire family was sitting, staring at me like OH HI WHERE U BEEN?) I felt like I'd run a marathon. Literally uphill. In the snow. Both ways. 

By yesterday afternoon, our street still hadn't been plowed. A plow came through the main road but ignored the cul de sacs (and basically boxed us in even further with a huge mountain of snow) and I sensed everyone was getting a bit antsy/desperate. I looked out the window and spotted one lone neighbor in the middle of the street with a snow thrower, clearing a single, small little line. I was like, whut. No. He's not. 

He was soon joined by another snow thrower and a shovel, then a few more shovels. I was like, Jason, go...help? The neighborhood is exploding with neighborliness and I don't know what to do. 

Jason was working, though (as was I, technically, no snow days off for freelancers), and by the time he wrapped up his last call the job was done. The guys were toasting beers and had successfully cleared a path through the plow pile, down the street to every single driveway. It was pretty amazing. 

And then the plow showed up first thing this morning and cleared everything else. But hey, at least everybody stayed busy? 

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(There's a neighborhood wine tasting party this weekend. We will express our gratitude for the snow effort then, the Storch way, with lots of booze and food.)

Comments

Sue W.

I don't know as I wouldn't go ahead and get that snow blower NOW! Or would that be tempting too much fate?

MamaKaren

My neighbor had hired someone (a group of "someones," actually) to do enough snowblowing yesterday to get us a walk path to the top of the court, so I greeted the group with a fresh pot of coffee and homemade granola bars. the work they did prevented me from having a massive snow bank behind my car when the plow finally came. I'm venturing out of the house for the first time today.

laura

YES re massive contribution to the wine party in neighborhood. AND, start the ovation of appreciation toast and applause to those who were able to clear snow for all! Question: might you raise idea of those currently without blowers all chipping in together for top best quality machine and sharing it and the labor to all in the court? Or is communal equipment too Portland West Coast an idea?

sheilah

I like the Storch Way. Hail, Storches! (and all your lovely wine...)

BeeBelle

Trust me, that snow plow would not have come down your cul de sac if the work wasn't already started (they often skip those little circles of no-place-to-push-snow either because of or blamed on budgetary reasons and low priority). Yes, the neighborhood join-together-to-clear-and-toast-with-beer is a suburban tradition in places that get the rare couple of feet of snow for that very reason! You didn't mention how when the snow plow finally came through it closed off the ends of all of the driveways ... did it?

April

We just moved to our house and received a snow blower when my father moved to somewhere where he wouldn't need it. We ended up digging ourselved and 2 neighbors out. US the people from the south east coast had a snow blower and were prepared for 32 inches. Lol

Amy A

Welcome to suburbia. Where we live (Metro Detroit) we NEVER get plowed. We've resorted to ignoring the massive amount of snow at the end of our driveway and engaging the 4WD feature in our vehicles to plow through. We live in a subdivision that is on the roster for plowing, yet somehow every year nothing happens.
Also, beware the mighty snowblower. Every. Single. One we have owned has died after about two years. Ugh.
Fun fact: If you stick to the same track made in your driveway you won't need to shovel :). And it does melt, eventually.

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