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Monday, February 06, 2006

Home, Home in the Rain

I am so out of the mode of writing I’m not sure I can still type.

It may also be the case that I can’t write because I just finished clearing the back deck of several inches of slush. My arms are weakened and feeling a bit rubbery.

It is a balmy early February evening in south-central Alaska. The current temperature is 35 degrees. (My computer says its 49 at the airport. That CAN'T be right! Can it?) Several days ago we were pushing zero, so this weather is almost hot in comparison (I really do mean that.)

I did my shoveling wearing a cardigan and no gloves, and I was almost too warm.

When I descended from my bedroom lair this morning, it was a balmy 41 degrees. I made a mental note to tell the kids they didn’t have to wear their snow pants to school. Shoot, they didn’t even need their coats! I hummed about the kitchen making their sandwiches.

Then Bruce called from Mississippi. He informed me that schools in Anchorage were all closed today.

“How do you know THAT? You’re in MISSISSIPPI for pete’s sake!” I hadn’t even thought to check for school closures. I thought school's only closed around here if a foot of snow dropped overnight.

Bruce said the husband of the co-worker he is traveling with in got in a minor fender-bender this morning because the roads in Anchorage were so awful.

Sure enough, I checked the school district’s website. School canceled. What to tell the kids? It wasn’t quite a Snow Day. Maybe a Freezing Rain Day? Slick-as-Snot Roads Day? Let’s Avoid a Lawsuit Day?

In the end, they didn't care WHY there wasn't school, only that they were FREE for another day. They cheered and hugged me as if I were the one who had arranged the whole thing.

So I loaded the kids into the van and instead of school we drove two treacherous blocks to a friend’s house. And they WERE treacherous, believe me. We spent the morning there.

This afternoon as I was fixing dinner, the temperature was bopping around all over the place. One minute it was 37 and sunny, the next it was 35 and hailing, moments after that 33 and snowing, and moments after that 33 and raining. Today for the first time I saw it snow, rain, and hail ALL AT THE SAME TIME. I didn’t know clouds could do that. Weird stuff.

In spite of the warmth and rain, there is still a fair amount of snow on the ground. When Bruce called to check in from his hotel room in Mississippi, I assured him that the grass is still covered. But the mailbox isn’t. (Technical points of reference.)

Temperatures are expected to stay mild for awhile, but hopefully will drop below freezing before too long. Though it is warm, it is way too wet for the kids to go out and play.
The kids are in bed. I am imbibing in a glass of wine, and my book awaits (“Shopgirl” by Steve Martin). I’ve earned a few minutes of solitude. And so have you!


At 11:54 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Freeze *%&$*@)(&#(! Freeze!!!! I knew we were in trouble when spring arrived here yesterday. It's all my fault! I bought a coat, boots and a sweater. Sorry.... Oh well, you guys are here and there's no snow and we have fun anyway. Our school was closed yesterday too. No heat (as if they needed it). Gave Dave, Tyler and Kiley the chance to go down to Qwest field and welcome back the Seahawks though. Boy did they have a good time. I HOPE THERE IS NO SNOW WHEN WE GET THERE. I'M PACKING AS IF WE'RE GOING TO HAWAII. HEAR THAT SNOW GOD'S???? I DON'T WANT ANY SNOW. I HATE SNOW. (is that convincing?)

At 12:12 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So YOU'RE the ones who stole our rain. 'Bout freakin' time, I gotta say. But thanks for sending the extreme weather our way. Just one mistake, though...I ordered SNOW, and you sent WIND. Next time get it right.



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