ANNIVERSARY Countdown (Count-Up?)

Today is Friday, March 7th, 2014. We were married 986 days ago, on June 25th, 2011.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Seasonal Chores

Last week, it was in the 60s in Boston, but the weather was starting to make the shift from sunnycool early fall to rainywindy late fall.   I didn't expect that on Thursday night, it would snow. 

On surfaces without much thermal mass – on the grass, on windshields, on the raised porch – we probably got a little less than an inch of accumulation.  Wet, sticky snow; white slush, really.

We drove back to Vermont yesterday, in separate cars.  That trip takes us immediately northward, and the accumulations were more significant the further northeast we went.  The trees were laden, and there were several inches of snow on the ground in the woods.  Cresting over the Killington ski area, the temperature dropped below freezing, and the weather accountants reported that they'd received a good six to seven inches.

The rule of thumb in my Michigan childhood was that we would have had at least one visible snow by Halloween, but that snow wouldn't persist for the season until Thanksgiving.  I don't remember an October snow in Boston, and according to Weather.Com, it's only ever happened four times.

Our mechanic Mike was kind enough to fit me in yesterday afternoon, to swap out my summer tires for snow tires in the midst of an afternoon of late-month state inspections.  The snow tires are harder than my gummy summer performance tires, and they're mounted on black steel wheels with no hubcaps rather than the good alloys.  Habañero always looks a little disappointed while wearing utilitarian black wheels and those high-sidewall tires, like James Bond dressed in Carhart overalls.

Now on Saturday morning, it's 30º and the wood stove is lit.  The cars have a good layer of frost on the windshields.  Nora is outside with the cats, as they re-acquaint themselves with walking in snow; they shake their paws every few steps and attempt to pick their way from grass to grass, like stepping stones across a river.  It's time for me to get a haircut (the first since the wedding!) and work on the article I've promised by Tuesday.  My editor is 3200 miles away, where there is no snow and hasn't been since 1972.

I kind of like scraping the windshield in the morning.  It's one of those jobs, like painting or mowing the lawn, where you can see a sharp difference between where you've worked and where work has yet to occur.  There's also a cord of wood dumped on the garage floor that needs to be stacked, a different kind of job where the pile stays the same size for a couple of hours and then seemingly without notice you're down to the last 40 splits and it's time to sweep the bark and sawdust.

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