If the weather.com forecast says "no significant accumulations expected," but the National Weather Station advisory reads "accumulations of 4 to 8 inches likely," which one am I supposed to believe?
I had a coworker once whose fiance' was attending college for a degree in meteorology. He wanted to become a TV weather announcer. My only thought was, "really? You have to go to college to learn how to lie to people?"
For days the news has been prepping us for snow. Lots of other places around the state got snow, anywhere from a dusting to a few inches. Not us. We got lots of clouds that looked like they might drop snow on us, and the temperature plummeted at a satisfying rate all afternoon on Sunday, but when push came to shove, the snow did not fall. It was very disappointing, let me tell you. This entire WINTER has been disappointing.
Its not that I want to spend months shoveling my car, shoveling my walk, picking snow lumps out of the feet of horses and dealing with children who want their hats, gloves and boots put on so they can go out in the snow for five minutes and then come in because its "too cold." Its not that I want to make my daily commute on a block of snow and ice.
Its rather that I believe every winter should have at least one or two decent snowfalls, for the same reason I believe that every summer needs at least two or three consecutive days of weather over 100F. You can't appreciate summer without snow, and you can't appreciate winter without a heat wave.
Growing up in the Seattle area meant that we would have winters where there was no snow at all, but every couple of years we would get at least one good snowstorm and two to six inches of accumulation. About every decade or so we would get a huge dump of snow that left the schools closed and gave us enough material to build some really excellent snow forts. I remember my first really big snowfall. I must have been four years old. The snow fell and fell and fell, and when I went outside I could barely walk because it was up to the top part of my short little legs. My brother made a snow tunnel. I thought it was the coolest thing ever.
Another year we got a really great snowstorm that dropped five or six inches of snow over the course of a couple of hours. It didn't start falling until late in the day, though, and it was close to bedtime. My brother and I stared out the window at the huge flakes illuminated by the streetlights and begged our mother to let us play outside. Dad was on shift at the fire station that night, and even though we had school the next day, Mom let us put on our snow clothes and go throw snowballs and make snow angels even though it was quite late. Seattleites do not tend to drive when there is any accumulation of snow on the ground, so our street was completely deserted. We made snow angels and stood under the streetlamp, catching snowflakes on our tongues.
New Jersey winters were a little sporadic as well. There was always some snow, but every third year brought a memorable storm. It was a revelation to me that life didn't have to come to a complete standstill becuse of snow. My first snowstorm came on a night my ex and I had plans. I watched the flakes coming down and figured we were going to be staying in. By the time we would have needed to leave for our reservation there were at least three inches on the ground and the streets had a good inch of compact snow. When my ex asked me why I wasn't ready to go, I was totally confused. Out we went, and there were just about as many cars on the road as there would have been on a clear evening. Amazing!
The first year we bought our house on Serpentine Drive, we had a huge storm. The snow in the driveway was up past the wheel wells on our cars. Our street didn't get cleared for a couple of days, so we kept the heat turned up and wished we had snowshoes. That was before my daughter was conceived. The winter she turned two, another big storm brought us several feet of snow. It drifted up shoulder-high agains the slider door in the back yard, and we had to dig a path out so the dog could go to the bathroom. It was piled so high that our dog could stand on the snow and put his paws and head easily over the top of our six-foot fence. The township "officially" closed all the roads and were weren't supposed to drive, but my work wanted at least a couple of bodies to staff the phones, so I snuck out the back roads in my Jeep. When I finally made it to the office, there was a huge snow berm all the way around the strip mall parking lot. I couldn't see any way to easily get in, so I got a running start and just plowed straight through it. Didn't get stuck, either.
The first winter after I came to Tri-Cities we had a doozy of a year. Lots of snow and cold that year, including a week of single-digit temperatures that froze the frost-free pump in my barn and left me lugging five-gallon buckets of hot water from my bathtub to the barn to fill the stock tank.
I've been waiting for the snow to start falling here since Sunday afternoon and I am started to get a little unhappy with the weather gods and the meteorologists; the former for failing to give us even one school delay or closure for snow this year, and the latter for making sweet white promises they cannot keep.