Thursday, December 13, 2007

Winter

I know it's not officially winter yet, but nevertheless, winter is the theme of today's posting.

Like I mentioned last time, my winter exercise program is in full swing. Never mind that slippery sidewalks make walking and running treacherous -- no need for them anyway, because it is snow shoveling season, off to an early and impressive start this year! Nearly every day I go out at least once to work on the fine artistry of maintaining the clearness of my driveway (and this week, the driveway of a friend as well who is away for the week).

So, since I wrote last time: first we had wet heavy snow.

Then we had medium consistency snow, but I couldn't get to it right away (except I had the amazing foresight to at least clear the Snowplow Ridges before work), and it melted a bit during the day and then refroze. So it was a two-inch-thick slab that I had to deal with when I came home from work that day (yesterday? Yes, yesterday). It wasn't rock-solid, thank goodness. It had kind of a porous texture. It broke in chunks and was modestly heavy but not as bad as it could have been. It was very good that I had cleared the Snowplow Ridges because they would have been really bad. This I know experimentally, because today I tried to tackle the Ridges in my friend's driveway and finally gave up. (I'll try again tomorrow.)

Today we had another two inches of light fluffy snow! After struggling with my friend's Ridges and giving up (I did clear the driveway, just not the Ridges), it was a joy to come home to my own driveway because all I had to deal with here was the two new inches of light fluffy snow.

According to today's local paper, our total snowfall this season has been 22.5 inches already (not counting today's 2 inches, which they will probably record as "trace").

Meanwhile, I've been trying to finish grading one more set of papers (before finals), and really want to get them back to the students tomorrow (the last day of classes). I imagine myself facing my class and saying, "I tried, but it was the shoveling of driveways that defeated me." But that would be pathetic, so I'll probably be up late tonight...

Meanwhile, I got my new snow tires put on my car today. When they were ready, it had started to snow again, so I got to test them and see if they really make a difference. I think they do. I did feel a bit more secure. And it wasn't as expensive as I had thought, because there was a special sale: buy three, get one free (I'm not kidding)!

These happy surprises are so nice! I've been finding life very hard lately, for a lot of reasons, and so I find myself appreciating such happy surprises even more than usual.

I'm gaining insight into my main spiritual struggle, and so I probably will be writing more about that soon.

But for now, I have papers to grade and snow to shovel!

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