I love the snow. Let’s not forget this point, as you read the rest of this lament about snow. I love the way our Springfield’s, and for that matter, our actual, real-life, towns look, when they are cloaked in a layer of beautiful, white, freshly fallen snow.
There is something magical about the quiet…the way snow insulates and dulls the sounds in the early morning when you first get up. It is peaceful, beautiful, and often times rewards children (and teachers) with a “snow day,” to frolic, relax, and have fun.
In short…snow is wonderful!
Until it isn’t…
In Eugene, here in the Willamette Valley where the REAL Springfield sits just across I-5, snow is a rarity. I joke about Eugene being in the “banana belt” of Oregon. On average, we usually get one or two days a year when the white stuff coats the trees, hills and forests around us. Usually one. Many years, none.
When we got Snow in TSTO at the beginning of the Winter Update (and no…we aren’t going to debate Christmas/Holiday/Winter again), my much better half, remarked, “Oh…your little town looks so nice. I hope we get some snow this year!”
She’s like that. Upbeat. Sweet. Positive (even if she knows it makes me nuts when she calls my TSTO Springfield my “little town”). She is a school teacher of the most extraordinary type, who still rewards her class for long periods of good behavior and scholastic achievement with a field trip to the movies, or the bowling ally, or the roller skating rink. Her kids work hard…play hard…and deserve the rewards.
The first wrinkle in “Mrs. Miller’s” perfect Winter Break, was that two days before the break was to start, we received a gigantic ice storm…as in the worst in 25 years. It destroyed thousands of trees…shut down power for more than 75% of the Eugene/Springfield area, and ended up keeping the kids and teachers home, for what was supposed to be their Holiday Party day.
Mrs. Miller was not pleased. But, she got through it…knowing that Christmas, and two of our girls (out of five) were coming for an extended holiday stay. However…the ice stuck around…and around…and around. Planes were delayed…travel plans made more dangerous…but we got through it with minor hitches.
“What do you do in your little town when there is an ice storm” I remember her asking one morning.
She did not seem enthused.
By week two of the ice, the neighborhood looked like a war zone…but the kids had come and gone…Christmas a success…in spite of reduced travel.
And then…just before everyone was to go back to school after “Winter Break,” Mrs. Miller got her wish…and it snowed. A lot. At least for us. Nearly 4″ of snow overnight. She went into full-blown “Winter Wonderland” kid mode.
We built a snowman (using a kit she got from one of her students for Christmas). We had “hot toddies” on the porch. We hunkered in…and enjoyed the rest of “winter break” together.
And then…when everyone was scheduled to go back to school…school was canceled again….and then again…
It was projected to warm up before the weekend…Nope. Another ice storm.
Another thick layer of ice…and to cap it all off, some varmint (most likely one of the “Christmas Raccoons” we have around here) made off with the nose, buttons, and glasses of our snowman!
So now…we had a “Winter Sandwich” of a thick layer of ice…4 inches of snow…and another thick layer of ice. But the power stayed on. Netflix binging…football…and creative foraging for recipes that worked with whatever was left in the cupboard ensued.
Today…after cancelling school for a record 6th day for the year (which need to be made up in June…argh!), Mrs. Miller was allowed to go back to school…and all is well. Mostly.
There is more snow predicted for tomorrow.
So…who do you blame for this?
Is it all Mrs. Miller’s fault, because she wished for snow, while belittling the size and scope of snow in my “little town?”
Is all of this because EA finally angered God (or the Gods if you prefer) with such a mishmash of religious blasphemy during the past few weeks??
Or…is it all simply because Eugene is so ill-equipped to deal with severe weather (we have a grand total of TWO snow plows…and refuse to use salt on our streets due to the environmental impact), that we are deserving of being a target of Mother Nature (like mobile homes in tornadoes) when the temperatures dip below 40 degrees?
The fact of the matter is…I still love the snow. It is rare…and gives us all a chance to whine about the SAME thing for once (after a year of whining about opposite outcomes).
But, I get it. Snow can be an inconvenience. I haven’t touched a golf club in more than 8 weeks. That has to change soon…
What do YOU Think about Snow…either in your “little towns” or in your REAL lives? Do you have stories or pictures to share about the Winter thus far (and yes…I realize we still have three more months of “official Winter”).
Let us know. Snow in the forecast for tomorrow. I’ll let you know how Mrs. Miller fares. The bigger question is this…if we get weather in the mid-to-upper-40s as is predicted…will EA come out with a “Flood Mode” for our towns?