|`Blizzard' conditions in Gloucester, Va.|
I expect Jim Cantore from The Weather Channel, outfitted in one of those trapper-style fur hats with ear muffs and clad in a puffy jacket and Uggs, to show up here in Gloucester anytime now. There's a forecast of snow that may fall this weekend -- around here it's looking like a rain/snow/sleet mix -- which pretty much spells doom for the entire region. People are in full freakout mode. I happened to be in the grocery store during a snowfall last night and the clerk mentioned he's expecting the store to be cleaned out in advance of this weekend's possible snowpocalypse.
It's pretty much panic central around Virginia. Washington D.C. could get a foot of snow, or more and the city will pretty much be shut down. It should snow in D.C. more often now that I think about it ...
For us species of non-native Virginians who are/were/have been fairly accustomed to dealing with that dreaded weather event called a "snowfall," the events that transpire here with the mere mention of the `s' word are a mix of mind-boggling and entertaining. Schools get canceled in "dustings." Schools get canceled for days when more than a couple of inches fall. I half-expect kids to start calling in snow threats instead of bomb threats to get out of tests.
The last couple of years we've had some pretty decent snow events. At least enough to make snowmen and snow ramps in the back yard for sledding purposes. The kids love it. I don't mind a good snowfall now and then, but it's this time of year I always start thinking about relocating to Aruba.
|It appears we used every flake of snow in the yard for this `Olaf'|
I did my time in the snow as a kid in Bend, Ore., and I'm over it. Been there, done that. I think hauling firewood into the house a couple, few times a day through the snow as my big brother lay in ambush with a bushel of snowballs may have scarred me. One time the snow was so deep he actually climbed up on the roof and jumped off the roof as I plowed by in a surprise attack. I am not making this up. My bro was a Ninja snow monster.
The fact that I was so dang skinny with nary an ounce of body fat didn't help either. (That situation has since been remedied.) Once I got cold as a kid I could never heat up. Plus, I just wasn't into the whole snowsport thing. People are shocked -- shocked! -- that I grew up 20 miles from world-class skiing at Mt. Bachelor and have never once set foot on that hill in skis or a snowboard. I don't feel like I've been cheated out of anything or somehow missed out. I spent many an hour as a kid clearing the snow out of my driveway and shooting hoops or even playing on packed snow. It was a lot cheaper entertainment than skiing, I'll tell you that.
Anyway, we're hunkering down here in Virginia preparing for "The Worst Snowstorm Ever -- Or At Least In The Past 6 Months" by stocking up on essentials. Got the milk, eggs, bread and toilet paper so we're good to go. I drove by Ace Hardware, our cool little neighborhood hardware store, and saw they had some toboggans and snow shovels in the display window. I bet they're having a run on all items related to snow. Good for them. Bring on the snow. And I'll say hello to Jim Cantore for you.
*This headline may be hyperbole. Of course, I spent more than 20 years in the news media so I might know a thing or two about hyperbole.