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What, again? - Phil's Rambling Rants
February 17th, 2007
06:50 pm

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What, again?
From the just when you thought it was safe to get back in your car department, in an exclusive limited engagement from beautiful northern Alberta, it's Snow II: the sequel no one wanted.  I'd just escaped from the horrors of Tuesday by midafternoon Thursday, salvaged a day and a half of the work week, restocked on perishables, and was enjoying a little gaming Friday night, and a light, powdery snow started falling, right on schedule.  (Somehow, after a decade or so of winter storms that were always less serious than predicted, we've had two in a week where the WILL weather team was spot on.)  Driving home Friday wasn't actually a problem, except for a few drivers that were spooked into thinking it was worse than it was, but by this morning, we had about three more inches, and the wind picked up and was busily piling up drifts.  By late afternoon, the wind had died down a little, but it was the second worst snow event we've had in about three years.  I shoveled my driveway out and hoped the lane would be cleared, but it didn't seem to be happening, so at 5:00 I started knocking down the drifts on the lane that looked too big to drive through.  As it was getting too dark to see, I decided that I'd done enough that if nothing changed overnight, I had a 90% chance of making it out to the road in the morning.  And just as I was trudging back home, the big 10 ton earth mover that had finally dug a tunnel to civilization on Thursday came through and actually plowed the lane.

The big snow set work back basically a week, and is going to cost me some vacation time that I won't have to spare if I really can go to Africa in the fall.  (For those of you who don't get this on your local news, the latest official statement is that everyone gets Wednesday off, and people who actually came to work Tuesday get the day off, but despite the fact that both the University and all the roads outside of Champaign-Urbana itself were closed, they're still saying you have to take vacation if you didn't come in.  They say that's what they did in 1979, so it's a precedent.  That's like saying that if my father punched your father in the nose, I should be free to punch you in the nose because there's a precedent.  A past injustice doesn't justify another one; English common law is a steaming pool of pig excrement.  But that's a whole nother rant.)  If the second snow keeps me from being able to see my tigers tomorrow (and while I'm confident now that I can get to Clay County, I don't know for sure that I can actually get through the back roads the last couple of miles; I'd walk those last couple of miles if I had to, but there isn't anywhere in Ashboro I could leave my car), you won't want to be near me, or even on the same Internet with me.

Good thoughts for my travel tomorrow and for the welfare of the cats (who are probably having some trouble coping with all this) are welcome.  "Funny" comments claiming responsibility for the snow or saying how wonderful it is will be taken as evidence that the commenter genuinely hates me.

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From:tollers
Date:February 18th, 2007 01:11 am (UTC)
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Oy. Good luck with the driving tomorrow... I hope you're able to get there and that the cats, somewhere in their little kitty brains, appreciate what you go through (or at least let you get in some petting while you're there, to make up for dealing with all the icky weather).

We had the same kind of ruling at work... Tuesday was a snow day and therefore paid time off, but Wednesday the office was open, so you had to be there or take personal time, even if you lived in a county that still had a Snow Emergency declared, making it illegal for you to be out on the roads. On the one hand, I can put my manager hat on and understand that Work Must Go On (and I was lucky and only live six miles from the office, along roads that are the first to be cleared), but on the other hand... geez... it sucks to have to use up personal days this early in the year for something over which you have absolutely no control.

On the plus side (if there can be a plus side), the 22 degree temps outside (which is also the forecast high for tomorrow) feel positively balmy compared to the high of 3 earlier in the week.

Good luck having decent weather and good cat interactions tomorrow!
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From:catalana
Date:February 18th, 2007 05:38 am (UTC)
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It's really exciting trying to use the sidewalks in campustown. Many of the sidewalks have paths that are scraped or trodden down...until you get to the curb. Where there's like 3 feet of snow piled up. And occasionally a single-shoe wide path to get you through it. It is incredibly not fun and I'm wondering how our grad student in a wheelchair is coping.

They say it's supposed to be 40 and raining on Tuesday, but cynically I think that will just refreeze and turn into ice. Which won't be a whole lot of an improvement. *sigh* Could we have it end now, please?

Good luck getting to see your tigers!
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