Saturday, February 20, 2010

Soaring Temperatures Hit Central Virginia!

It was a sweltering 52∘today! You would think I'd be happy after two solid months of frigid weather, but I'm not. We are still covered in snow and ice from the back to back storms, that cursed us earlier this month. I live in a rural subdivision, that has no paved roads. Our roads are hard packed clay, with a sprinkling of gravel to provide grit when the roads get wet. In the summer, when the road is dry, rooster tails of dust go flying up high into the air behind any vehicle that traverses them. Now we have the opposite problem. Scraping the snow off the road also scraped the gravel off, and the melting snow and ice has saturated the clay, and turned it into a gray muddy, pothole laden soup. Our tires pick up this soup, and spray it all over the sides of our cars and tucks, making a glorious muddy mess. When exiting my truck, the backs of my legs make contact with the outside of the rocker panels, and that gray muddy soup is transferred to the back of my pant legs. A clean pair of pants is good for just one ride, then onto the dirty clothes pile!

My house has no gutters, so melting snow and ice drips down onto the deck below and refreezes. If I don't do something to abrade the thick icy surface and increase traction, I risk breaking my neck every time go out the door!

Two pine trees broke in the last storm. One fell against the house, with its top resting on the roof, and the other fell on top of that one. Thanks to my inconsiderate next door neighbor, I don't have a functioning chain saw anymore, but I do have a bow saw. Yesterday I got out and cut up the tree laying on the one that's on the house. I will have to use my pole saw to pair down the one on the house, since a significant portion of it is above the roof. I've been worrying about these pines for years, ever since an ice storm earlier in the decade coated them in ice, and permanently bent them in the direction of the house. Well.....I don't need to worry about these two anymore, but there is still a larger one that didn't break. Every time we get significant snow, it bends over and kisses the roof. Then when the snow melts, it springs back up. If it ever breaks, I fear it will land on the roof and do some serious damage, because it is twice as thick as the two that snapped.

I've been watching the Winter Games in Vancouver this week. I particularly enjoyed the men's free skate, and the ice dancing. I'm now looking forward to the women's free skate. Then of course there is the complete insanity of the downhill, and head first sliding down an icy channel on little sleds at 90MPH in the Skeleton! These competitors have to be stark raving mad thrill seekers! But nuts as they are, they do make the winter Olympics much more fun to watch than the summer events.

The great giant slab of meat that my mother served on Monday, finally made its exit. Now I know what an anaconda feels like, after swallowing a capybara! ;-)

Tonight's music: Stravinsky's Rite Of Spring, and Petrushka, and Rimsky Korsakov's Scheherazade. Nice stuff! :-)

Melissa XX


Stace said...

I know what you mean about the dirt on the side of your truck - whilst I may not drive on clay roads here once the motorway gets damp the car gets covered in a black greasy layer. Bump into the car when loading the boot (trunk?) wearing beige jeans and you end up swearing.

Can you do something about the remaining tree before it does serious damage?

Living in Holland we've been watching a lot (most) of the speed skating as it's the best sport of the Dutch. But we did catch the downhill (insane, esp the italian that flew across the line after falling on the last jump). And being British I had to catch the highlights of the Skeleton. That sport has to have started as a pub idea. I can just imagine some guys who do the luge, having a few drinks and one of them saying 'You know what would be a really good idea? Going down head first.

I can't imagine a sane, sober mind coming up with the idea - self preservation would stop that surely :)


Anonymous said...

I love the ice skating to. Especially the costumes!
So beautiful.

Calie said...

Be careful, girlfriend. I don't want you falling off the roof cutting trees.

Still cleaning up here. Got my chain saw repaired.

Calie xxx