Select Page

That’s what the news was calling the nation-wide pre-winter storms, and the news has been on almost constantly for the last four days. I can only laugh. The images and time-lapse of the front moving in were amazing, the amount of snow record-breaking (nationally, with 74 inches falling in 24 hours) and then a second lake effect storm rolling in. The Internet is being filled with memes and song parodies about the event. It’s practically it’s own genre of humor.

Everything in South Buffalo and the Southtowns shut down Tuesday, with driving bans (which we are still under), and even , sadly, a few deaths, mostly from heart attacks while shoveling. I keep thinking we can’t brag to our kids about the Blizzard of ’77 any more.

Until a front-loader cleared some of our street this evening, there was, de facto, no street — just a rolling blanket of white from porches on one side to porches on the other, accentuated by drumlins that were probably cars. Our back and side doors were impassable, the former having a drift obscuring all but a sliver of the top of the window. After a few days of taking turns in small efforts, we cleared the steps down to the front sidewalk. It took Merry the better part of an hour to get to the furnace vent on the side of the house to make sure it was clear for more expected snow.

But life is good. It’s like a vacation of sorts, separated physically from the world, with only the phone and email to interrupt domestic activities and home office obligations. I caught up on some projects, and miscellaneous reading to boot.

We ran out of bread, so Merry made some more. We’ve rationed milk and eggs to save for cooking, but with all the frozen and canned goods — as in canned by Merry with produce from the farm — we would be eating well into the New Year while others would be resorting to cannibalism. We generate very little garbage, consume little of the reasonable supplies of everyday items we happened to have, and with the power and water staying on this isn’t even a challenge. (Except I had to rebuild the broken snow shovel, and the PVC pipe is a bit too flexible.)

Mostly I think it’s just having my wife home all the time. Feminism be damned, nothing feels more natural and satisfying, but then the other half of satisfaction is not having to go anywhere myself — because I can’t.

It’s fascinating to watch, but even the sound of the front-loader intrudes on my very soul — a reminder of the inevitability of life going back to normal. And I’ve discovered these last four days that “normal” isn’t my natural habitat, home is.