Monday, March 10, 2008

Sunset after a Blizzard

Most of my readers (all five of you) know what happened here in our own little corner of the world this past weekend. We had, at the very least, blizzard like conditions, if not an actual blizzard.

It started out with a light friendly snow Friday morning and by Friday night we were at a level two here in Sandusky County. (For those of you who live out of state; see snow level definitions listed after the post. They range from one to three, three being the worst.)

By Saturday, the wind had picked up, snow came down in a horizontal path, and the county declared a level three, snow emergency. Now normally Al and I are on top of these things and are prepared, but not being able to go out on Saturday changed our normal weekend schedule.

For one thing, we get groceries on Saturday. We had ample food in the house so there was no threat of starvation. My Pepsi and chocolate supply, thank goodness, were fully stocked, but there were still some necessities missing from our larder.

My husband treats himself once a week to a pint of ice cream. I know, I too think he is insane to continue this weekly treat when temperatures are below freezing but the man loves his ice cream. So he moped around like a kid on Christmas Eve who has learned that Christmas has been delayed a couple of days.

In my view, the most serious shortage involved the lack of salt-coated nourishment. I considered taking the saltshaker and just dousing my tongue with it, but that would have meant removing the afghan I was warmly wrapped in, and leaving my cozy perch on the living room sofa — too little reward for so much effort.

On the second Saturday of the month, Al and I have a ritual of going out to eat for breakfast. We started this ritual as a means of self-preservation when we first married and found ourselves heading a houseful of six children, aged 8 to 16. We called it “Al and Terry time” and in the beginning, it was a weekly observance.

After a while, we felt guilty excluding the children from this weekly treat, and one Saturday “surprised” them and took them all out to breakfast. Oh, what a mistake!

They complained because we made them get up too early. They complained about the lack of menu selection. They complained that the whole dining process took too long. They complained that their younger brother was staring at them. They complained for the sheer joy of complaining. And they complained that it was a dumb idea, and in this last complaint, they were absolutely right.

Al and I never took them out for breakfast again, nor did we feel the slightest twinge of guilt. Ever.

As I write this, we have been down graded to a level one. My husband is anxious to get to the store and pick up his weekly treat and I want to make sure that I am stocked up on the appropriate salt laden goodies.

We went from a wind rattling blizzard to the quiet stillness that often follows a storm. As daylight slowly faded, I noticed that the sun, for the first time in several days, began to poke its way through the cloudy sky. It was a comforting sight.

I captured its brief appearance as I leaned out my front door. I’m calling it “Sunset after a Blizzard.”

Until Next Time – Happy Ancestral Digging!

Note: For those of you out of state who have no idea what all this level stuff means, I will quote you from OCSWA (Ohio Committee for Severe Weather Awareness):

LEVEL 1: Roadways are hazardous with blowing and drifting snow. Roads may also be icy. Drive carefully.

LEVEL 2: Roadways are hazardous with blowing and drifting snow. Only those who feel it is necessary to drive should be out on the roads. Contact your employer to see if you should report to work.

LEVEL 3: All roadways are closed to non-emergency personnel. No one else should be out during these conditions unless it is absolutely necessary to travel or a personal emergency exists. All employees should contact their employer to see if they should report to work. Those traveling on the roads may subject themselves to arrest.

Be sure to memorize this – there may be a test!

Note this post first published online, March 10 , 2008, at Desktop Genealogist Blog at The News-Messenger Online

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