I love New England. One of the things I love most about it is that is has four distinct seasons (five, if you count Mud Season). So when the winter weather here starts acting like the winter weather in the South, i.e. rainy and cool with no snow, it kind of annoys me a bit. I expect to have snow. And we have had no snow (or bitter cold) since November. We had a wet fall, and that seems to have extended into winter.
T’was the night before Christmas and all through the house,
Not a creature was stirring, especially not a mouse.
The children were snoring all snug in our bed,
And I killed time as sermon number two was said.
Geoff read his history book in the loft,
After the last high notes of the night, I coughed.
We stumbled on home as the clock struck three,
And were greeted by Dash who needed to pee.
After feeding each dog and both of the cats,
We took off our coats, shoes, and hats.
With dawn fast approaching we took to our bed,
With visions of sleeping late stuck in our heads.
When in the back yard there arose such a clatter,
Dash sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
A dachshund stampede that was gone in a flash,
I groaned, shook my head, and then muttered “DASH!”
The moon couldn’t shine off of non-existent snow
(No White Christmas for us this year as you know),
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a flying sleigh, and nine panting reindeer.
My first thought was that I must be sick,
“There’s no way that I could be seeing St. Nick!”
More rapid than eagles his nine reindeer came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;
“Now, DASHER! now, DANCER! now, PRANCER and VIXEN!
On, COMET! on CUPID! on, DONNER and BLITZEN!
And RUDOLPH! Keep that nose of yours shining with light!
There’ll be no mid-air sleigh collisions tonight!”
As a ball when it meets Teddy Ballgame would fly,
The reindeer and sleigh fiercely arced through the sky,
And up to the house-top the reindeer they flew,
And suddenly I wondered what Santa would do.
And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
The pounding and scratching of each reindeer hoof.
I wondered whether Santa had already found,
That we have no chimney! And two small loud hounds!
I blinked to be sure of what I was seeing
When I realized that, yep, Rudolph was peeing.
Santa hopped out of the sleigh and dusted his clothes,
He strode across the yard like someone who knows.
He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all dirty with ashes and soot;
A bundle of toys he had crammed in a sack,
He looked like Mall Santa, coffee break over, heading back.
His eyes — how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
He laughed as he kicked off melting ice and slush,
“Good God,” I said, “Santa Claus is a lush.”
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath;
So naturally we started to hear a loud screech.
“The smoke alarm! Where’s the stepladder to reach?”
He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
Not anything like that creepy one on the shelf;
Then I saw he had another bag, packed full of coal,
And I wondered where he’d found it at the North Pole.
He saw the look on my face, and he smiled as he said
“Don’t worry, there’s no reason for you to feel dread.
That coal’s for the White House, they’ve all been quite bad,
Ivanka, Jr., Eric, and ESPECIALLY their dad!”
“But Santa,” I said, “do you have anything more?
Robert Mueller works very hard on this terrible chore.”
He chuckled and said in his cheery slurred speech,
“Fear not, they’ve got all that they need to impeach!”
He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
They flew low and away, to avoid any missiles.
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
“HAPPY CHRISTMAS TO ALL*, AND TO ALL A GOOD-NIGHT!”
*Except certain people in DC.
I normally don’t mind a little snow, as it is New England and we expect to get some (mostly) between November and March. But the two storms that we have had most recently have been a bit more problematic, mostly because of strong winds and heavy coastal flooding.
When I got up this morning, the temperature was 4 degrees Fahrenheit and the wind chill was -10 degrees Fahrenheit. We may even get some snow tomorrow night and Thursday. I will try to get some pictures and post them if we do. And behind that storm will come more bitter cold, what our fave meteorologist Dave Epstein is calling “the worst of the winter”. Predicted lows for Friday and Saturday are well below zero, not even including wind chill.
ETA: The National Weather Service is now saying that Thursday could bring a “significant winter storm” with predictions from 4 to 8 inches to as much as 12 inches of heavy wet snow (with numbers possibly changing depending on how far inland the storm tracks), plus high winds, which means downed trees and power outages are much more likely. We may even have ourselves a blizzard. Oh my.
Most of you know that we’ve been doing this for a few years now. Partly it’s because we’re cheap broke, and partly it’s because we send this link to nearly 200 people who we’d legitimately want to send a real card to. Also, I’m not big on the card produced by Shutterfly and never seen by the sender thing, and this method actually has a Snowflake’s chance in Cambridge of generating a conversation*. So we do it this way.
So while there was a lot I liked in this episode, there was also some stuff that I didn’t like. But first, a few things that were guessed correctly.
Well, we were almost under the illusion that Spring was here, and then Winter decided to play a little prank on us. Not quite as spectacular as the big blizzard back in 1997, but still, very winter-like weather. Here in Winthrop the weather has switched back and forth quite a bit between rain, sleet and snow. Right now it is snowing, and has been since I got up this morning. I doubt much of it will stick, though, and that seems to be David Epstein’s assessment as well.
[130pm] Snow ends from NE CT into RI & NE MA next 1-3 hours, while snow gradually ends across BOS & SE MA thru 5 pm. pic.twitter.com/QQIqZEacbe
— NWS Boston (@NWSBoston) April 1, 2017
Still, it is nice to see a beautiful winter landscape one last time before spring really arrives.
Ever since the big nor’easter we had earlier this month, there has been a new tourist attraction of sorts along the coastal road between Revere and Winthrop. A sailboat washed ashore, dragging its mooring line with it. The storm washed it almost all the way up onto the sea wall. I can’t imagine that the boat was not damaged in the process. What a shame.
Anyway, it seems as if at any given moment, someone has stopped to look at the erstwhile shipwreck and take pictures of it. The first day after the storm, there was a whole row of cars. And every single time I have driven along that coastal road, no matter what time of day, there was someone looking at the boat. Seriously, every single time, including today, when I finally stopped and got a picture or two myself.
I hope it is not too badly damaged.
Dash Linus was not impressed.
Since Kelly and I were stuck at home yesterday, we had a marathon viewing of Season Six of Game of Thrones, just to watch it all again. So it was so very appropriate when we re-watched the scene where the white ravens were sent out to announce the arrival of winter. When I got up this morning, the temperature was 12 degrees Fahrenheit, with a wind chill of about -20. When I went outside this morning, the winds had blown the snow around quite a bit, which at least made a pretty picture in the back yard.
It looked like we had gotten about a foot of snow, at least when I was out clearing the walks.
Officially, we got around 11 inches of snow, according to Boston.com. As you can also see on that data table later in the article, the wind was blowing pretty hard – it got to over 50 mph here. At one point yesterday afternoon when Kelly and I looked out the window, we could not see more than 100 yards or so.
So puppies did not go out a lot yesterday. This morning Dash was excited that he was finally going to get to go outside, but he became much less excited when he realized that conditions were still far less than ideal for anyone really close to the ground.
Note that in the above photo, we are looking out onto our concrete patio, which is covered by our deck. So all of that snow you see out to the support beams was blown in by the wind. I’m just glad we didn’t have to try to crank up that generator. That would have been truly awful. As it was, Kelly and I were marveling over the difference in experiences between our new place and our old one. At our old place, we would have been feeling terrible cold drafts even in our bedroom.
As it was, some members of the household decided that it was best if they stayed under blankets during the snowstorm.
Dash and Thumbelina also decided that it was best if they stayed in our bed.
And last but definitely not least, little Violet wanted me to come snuggle with her in “her” room (the guest bedroom) for a while. She does this thing where she sees me, waits for me to walk up to her, then she jumps over the baby gate we have installed in the doorway of the guest room, then turns around to see if I am following her. When I come through the gate, she will walk over to the bed and flop down on her favorite blanket, which is actually Kelly’s bathrobe. And then it’s snuggle time.
We may get even more snow this weekend, with predictions for “heavy” snow on Monday, although I have not yet seen any estimates of how much.
Stay warm, everyone.
Over the last couple of days, we had our first nor’easter since we moved to Winthrop. The storm caused wind speeds here near the coast to pick up quite a bit, and as result there was a pretty heavy surf along the beaches here too.