This morning Kevin listened to the weather report before leaving for work. VDOT said that their goal is to have the roads passable within 48 hours after the storm ends.
“That’s fantastic!” he said. “By then, everything will have melted.”
My husband lost pretty much all faith in RVA’s snow removal abilities when he witnessed a gross oversight of VDOT back in the Winter of 2010. Kevin was making his Christ Renews His Parish (CRHP-pronounced chirp) weekend retreat with some other men at St. Michael the Archangel Church. The parking lot was pretty well covered with snow when they arrived that Saturday morning, but they were undeterred. Things proceeded as scheduled.
Riding home that snowy Sunday, Kevin witnessed what we sincerely hope is a very rare occurrence, even in RVA. He saw flashing lights up ahead when he pulled out of the church parking lot. As he approached the intersection, Kevin saw a VDOT dump truck parked on the other side of the road. A police car was in the intersection, so he deduced that there had been a car accident.
Nope! The salt dispenser had fallen off the dump truck in the middle of the intersection. Kevin, who is from upstate New York where they know how to use snow removal equipment, laughed his butt off. Not only do they not know how to drive in the snow, but apparently, they don’t know how to bolt down a salt dispenser, either.
“Let’s just throw it in the back of the truck and hope it stays.”
It was the same weekend his roommate attempted to make coffee in the room without adding water. I know for a fact my husband didn’t sleep well that night. He usually has trouble sleeping the first night in a new place, when he’s away from me, and when it sounds as if there is a power tool being used in the same room while he attempts to snooze.
The next day Kevin relayed the coffee incident and flat-out told our friend: “I love your brother like a brother, dude snores like a chainsaw.”
A blond cutie I babysat while in college whose parents were both professors at Hollins was amused by my frequent singing and love of books. One day when I was taking care of her it snowed. As is the case with many children, she wanted to spend as much time outside as she could.
I was singing this clip to her from White Christmas as I got her all bundled up to go outdoors.
“We could be there with snow!” “I wash my hair with snow!” “I think I’ll get a little shut-eye, go to sleep, and dream of snow, snOW, sNOW, SNOW!”
“Do you want to go outside?” I asked.
“Nooooo,” she sang.
“You don’t want to go outside?”
“Nooooo,” she sang again.
“But you always want to go outside.”
“Wash my hair…noooo!” she sang.
“Oh, now I get it.” She was encouraging me to sing another round but had trouble with the consonant ‘S.’
Our conversations could be quite entertaining. I once asked her what she saw when she went to the state fair. “Pigs pooping.”
One summer day I told her that I couldn’t take her out in the backyard because the day before I’d gotten so many bug bites.
She’d look out the window longingly and sigh, muttering “so many bug bites.”
Scandalous Sledding Escapades
We have a tradition in my family that came about, as some traditions do, totally by accident. When we lived in Naperville, Illinois, my mom, dad, sister, and I would go to this popular hill to sled. I’m not sure where it came from, but we had this slick black sled that had a curved backrest, places to put your feet, and even little brake handles you could use to steer. I don’t remember much about the experience except that I refused to ride with my dad again after we rammed into a pole and an orange mesh fence, and I went flying.
About 5 or 6 years later when we lived in New Jersey, we still had the same sleek black sled. There was a really big hill behind our house in Chester covered with snow and ice. Actually, our house was at the top of the hill, and there were great places to sled behind and to the side of our property. I underestimated the amount of ice and overestimated the ability to steer or stop with the one remaining brake handle.
We were careening along at a good clip when I realized I couldn’t get us to slow down, much less stop. My sister’s leg got scraped up pretty bad when we slid under the wooden fence, breaking the bottom rung. At least, we didn’t keep sailing into the street. I’m pretty sure that was the last time she rode on a sled with me, or at least, it was the last time she rode on that sled with me.
I’m not sure what happened to the sleek black sled. I imagine we lost it or left it behind in one of our many moves. I hope a family found it that was able to enjoy its speed without running into fences or maybe even while running into fences.