I had something more serious planned for the first "real" day of the new year, but the fourth and fifth (or is it fifth and sixth?) snowstorms of the season hit on Monday and Tuesday. I’m 5 feet 2 inches tall and the piles of snow at the curbs are now above my head.
These kids are from the 20 December storm. Even then the piled snow was deep enough that Mom didn’t need to find a hill for the children to play on.
Native and long-time Mainers have a lot more practice than I do at snow maintenance and these folks were clearing paths and cars on Monday, New Year's Eve, two hours before the storm ended.
Today is only 2 January, spring arrives much later this far north than in New York City, and I’ve had just about as much snow as I care to see already. Nevertheless, Mother Nature has some tricks up her sleeve that even I, in my now dampened enthusiasm for the beauties of winter, can appreciate.
Workmen started fixing the roof of this house behind mine about two months ago. I doubt they’ll have much use for that ladder to finish the job for awhile.
This is my little, red PT Cruiser (shot from my second-story window) when there were still another two or three hours worth of snow to be dumped on us Monday.
Understandably, the city of Portland, Maine, has all the right equipment for moving and removing snow. Early Tuesday morning, they had gone beyond plowing it off to the sides of the road to trucking it out of neighborhoods. This is what may be the world's largest snow blower and I'll bet it's a tricky operation driving the dump truck so close behind the blower truck that their bumpers are kissing.
As if Monday's storm were not enough, Tuesday dawned with weather predictions of another storm to begin in the afternoon that would leave an additional eight to 11 inches of the white stuff behind. A few flakes began to flurry at 3PM and the city sent out an email alert informing residents there would be a "parking ban" that night - the second in two days: no cars on any streets from 10PM to 6AM.
By dusk, two hours later, the snow was beginning to pile up a bit, but my newly-acquired, northern snow antennae were telling me the weather people were blowing more smoke than snow about the size of the second storm.
And I was right - the second storm was, thankfully, a dud. When I looked out the front window this morning, the snow had been neatly cleaned off the street during the night and there are barely two inches needing to be removed from the sidewalk.
And so it goes in a Portland, Maine, winter - until next time. After all, it's only January 2. But take a look at these birds on a wire – and on a roof – lined up at the height of Monday's storm. Snow and cold don’t seem to bother crows much, nor the seagulls (the smudge in the upper right corner) who soared as high as on a clear, summer day.
[At The Elder Storytelling Place today, Nancy Leitz explains what a clever husband she has in Roy Wins the Thermostat War.]