A journal of healing

The Perfect Storm

Jan backyard  This is a shot of my garden sometime in the first week of February. The weather this winter has been delightful and warm. Every evening after work, my husband and I sit out on the covered deck and chat. It is the wind down of the day. I miss the outdoors all day and the fresh air. Sitting in my garden grounds me, especially after a long crappy day, which there seems to be an abundance of lately.

Last week, alerts for poor weather started showing up a day or so before Tuesday. I love checking the weather and the maps and air streams and all that. I also have a very intuitive gut. I am usually more accurate than the professionals. I had my staff Monday prepare everything for all the Wednesday classes and anything necessary for Tuesday was to be completed. My coordinator usually just laughs at me and calls me a worry-wart but this time she complied and we were set if something happened and no one could get in.

snow on light Something did happen. We got over 20 inches of snow in six hours. It was horrendous. I planned on working at home no matter what. I got up around 6 and sent an email saying I was working at home. By 8:00 am, our area was in a mess with grid locks and impassable roads. My coordinator called and thanked me and she remained safe at home. My Nurse Educator also was prepared to work from home as she lives over 20 miles away from the office. There were images on the DOT cameras that you can check into all over the city of accident after accident. Major highways were bound up from tractor trailer trucks being stuck. They issued a no unnecessary driving emergency at 10:00am.

car 2-16-16 The thought of being stuck in a car for three hours or more is overwhelming to me. My body would not have handled it. As it was, I did not sleep the night before from the anxiety of having to go into work or not. Our company is considered medical necessary  and we are all to report, even if we do not see patients. Personally, I think that is crap. Especially since I never see patients and I can work totally from home and VPN into the systems at work. But there are some antiqued few who still hold out to old work thinking and have not grasped virtual offices.

the wall  By two o’clock, the village came through and left six feet walls at the end of everyone’s driveways. I would not have been able to get my car back in to the garage if I had gone in and came home when they finally closed the offices at 3 PM. I had put in a full day and had done a lot of work safe and secure in my house. To me, they got a lot more out of me than if I had tried to come and go. I would not have been able to focus at work.

backyard snow 2-16-16 We tried to clear the back deck and a path because the poor doggies were unable to get to the yard. It took a lot of persuasion to get them to do their business in the small area we prepared. The snow was very dense and heavy and that was adding to the mess. Even the plows were getting stuck.

potted snow They officially closed all the expressways in the area in the early afternoon. Streaming headlines asked “How are you getting home?”  I think there is a lot of stupidity in demanding people who are really not essential report to work or else. If you did not come in, you have to use paid time off. Only teachers in school districts get paid for not coming to work because of snow. I get that it is a loss of revenue. But it is also a dissatisfier to know that the company puts money over people lives by putting them into jeopardy.

tunnel By early evening, the snow had stopped and people were digging out. We made a path for the kids to use for doing their business. Our snow plow guy came and cleared out the driveway and I was able to get out to go to work easily the next day. Many people did not make it in. Even the visiting staff rearranged their patients and many were not seen. What good would it have been to go out and then get stuck somewhere or in an accident? You would not have been able to get down driveways if you could even get there.  It is beyond me why the company insists on this.

As I get older, I value more the safety and security of my life more than the almighty dollar. I also am not brave and the idea of putting myself into a precarious position of driving in frightening conditions has little or no appeal to me. I will admit, I hate driving in winter more now than ever.

This Sunday morning, the snow is melting but still too deep for easy running for either dogs. But they have made some paths and look like Pac Man going down their little alleys. The temperature today should help to dissipate more of the snow. There is more predicted for the week, and I will do due diligence and perseverate on it in the middle of the night. But today, the air was filled with bird songs. You could sense the difference in the light and sounds of the anticipation of spring’s arrival. The squirrels were at my feeder and my cardinal flew right by my nose as I stood on the deck. It was as if he was saying, “hang in there, this too shall pass.”

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Comments on: "The Perfect Storm" (5)

  1. I guess it is because we get it so rarely around here that I am supremely jealous of your snow. It always feels so starkly beautiful, nature’s attempt to erase us all.

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  2. I didn’t want to go to work during last week’s snowstorm, especially since hubby (who’s the best winter driver I’ve ever seen) made it partway to his job and had to turn around and come home because he couldn’t get through. Fortunately, my job is in the opposite direction, and while driving required some winter experience, I was able to get there. I’m ready for summer – your back yard looks very appealing and relaxing.

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  3. Hey Jane,

    How you doing? It’s a pleasure to stop by and say a quick ‘hello’ and leave some tracks across the snow of a backyard I’m getting to know as your little slice of Eden 🙂

    There’s warmth to be found in this snow-laden post and gentleness to your sense of humour that is quite charming. Personally speaking, I love to wake to a heavy snowfall and be the first to blaze a trail of fresh footsteps along a hidden path, it makes me feel like a pioneering Himalayan adventurer 🙂

    I live in a small corner of South Wales in the UK where the climate mainly fluctuates between rain, more rain, heavy cloud or peppered skies, and what often feels like extended periods of inclement winter weather lasting the whole year through. Sunshine is a wonder rarely seen and always cherished! Snowfall is relatively frequent during the winter months, although to a far lesser degree than you have had of late, but it causes the same inconvenience and disruption across the region as it appears to do for you as well. Delays and traffic congestion always occur and accidents are frequent, inevitable and unavoidable, or so it seems. The Welsh landscape is both beautiful and serene, its geography fashioned with a sprawling myriad of hills and valleys, and many of the towns and villages are scattered and concentrated across these undulating areas where coal production (and heavy industry) once ensued…hilltops wear blackened slag scars and bear the tears of mining, whilst hillsides wear slate grey and bear the tiers of terraced housing. In heavy snow these hilly townships are often inaccessible from main roads and can remain quite isolated for several days and in certain cases for several weeks. As a consequence, it is not unusual to have rows of unoccupied desks in the work place during the very worst spells of winter weather when folk are unable to safely descend from the higher ground to the transport networks below. Bizarrely, given the steep gradients of some of the outermost hills, it is not unusual to have work colleagues who might live as little as a quarter mile apart (as the crow flies) from those who do get to work missing from their desks either. And in some cases, colleagues missing who live quite literally mere streets (blocks) away from each other. I used to think it was just a feeble excuse not to go to work until I moved to higher ground for a short while and became stranded for a week or so at the top of a hill. If not for the inconvenience it imposed on daily life, I would happily have stayed living there and enjoyed a free spell of leave during every snowfall! The views were superb. But all this before technology offered opportunity for remote and virtual working, which is a great idea if and when available, although it’s not yet affordable nor deemed suitable by my employer for my humble administrative job. Never mind.

    Reflecting on the ‘garden decking’ (which are two words strung innocuously together that inspire my mind to think of the wooden flooring of some tall-mast sailing ship buoyant upon a sea of emerald grass and cascading shrubbery) and your evening wind-down sat with hubby and dissolving the day away, I recall my parents do something very similar whenever the UK weather allows. Merrily they sit and chat and sip a cold beer or gin and tonic, or perhaps empty the contents of a coffee pot between them and wait for dusk to close the day. They call it the ‘Sun-downers Club’, which I thought quite delightful. I imagine your experience is as warm and welcoming, and perhaps more frequent given the better climate and greater frequency of sunshine. It sounds a treasured time and must provide a wonderful opportunity to relax and ‘chill out’…and maybe unwind on your own imagined yacht or cruise-liner. Perhaps the decked area of your ship has a name? And if not, what about ‘The Red Cardinal? Those fabulous fiery birds have a wonderful symbolism and you really are most fortunate to have one stationed nearby… http://www.whats-your-sign.com/animal-symbolism-cardinal.html

    Well, i must away and fix a late evening snack before bed. It’s been a delight to visit your heart-felt and authentically beautiful Blog and leave a scribble or two. I’ll look forward to returning and reading more of your adventure and journey.

    Thank you Jane 🙂

    Best wishes.

    Namaste

    DN – 22/02/2016

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