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Cabin Fever

Dirty SnowIf youíve been wondering where Iíve been since my year-end review of RMKK, I took some leisure time from writing my column to bask in the sun on a remote tropical island and eat bon-bons, while waiters served me little cocktails that came with umbrella swizzle sticks. Not!

Studies, schedules, and routine took a powder during Grandpa Daveyís 3-week vacation. After a combination of sub-zero temperatures, ice fishing, sledding, snowshoeing, building snowmen, staring out of the window to watch the snow fly, and watching plenty of black and white TV shows and movies, Iíve been trying to get back into a routine with M & E. Boy, that was a mouth full. Itís the middle of winter and cabin fever time. The glow of the holidays is over, the valley is socked in with inversions, and we are beginning to drool for spring.

Montana is one of the forgotten states, so in case you havenít heard, we were dumped on with over 60 inches of snow in a 2-week period. All of this snow created a glorious winter wonderland at its best, and wreaked havoc at its worst by collapsing roofs and hindering travel. Warmer temperatures then invaded the valley, which caused thawing during the day. Colder nighttime temperatures caused re-freezing. Dirty snow piles now line the streets and parking lots have developed into ice skating rinks.

Leaving my alley recently, to take the girlís to Nature Journal, became a lesson in snow removal. Before driving away, I surveyed the situation. Earlier that morning, Grandpa Davey had taken about 20 minutes of spinning his tires before he slid out of the drive and was on his way. Surely the warmth of the sun, (yes we had sun that day), had melted some of the snow and I decided it would be a cinch to plow through with the mini-van. Somewhat doubtful, I pushed those thoughts aside. A sudden stop into frozen snow reinforced that I should have listened to my hunch. We were stuck. It was like I had landed on a parking lot French fry and couldnít get off. Irritated with myself, I ordered M & E to get the snow shovels. We began pitching snow from around the vehicle. I became mortified when I realized the van was buried to the undercarriage. Unable to find the camping shovel, we began scraping with pots and pans. While I contemplated calling Triple A, a couple of nice nativeís came along and pulled me out. An hour and a half had gone by and M & E missed Nature Journal that day.

Did I forget to tell you how much I love this place?


©01/19/09
 
     

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