27 February 2009

Kevin rescues the Fleet Coordinator in the aftermath of "Snowmageddon"

After 8 inches of snow last night, the real work began. At least 10 HOURCARs would need to be dug out of the snow. The HOURCAR team had their instructions and the four of us got to work. I took my fancy "steel core" shovel from home, thinking it would make for quicker work.

The first car I went to was #16, North Loop. The cobblestone streets around the hub were curiously absent of snow. And so was the Yaris. It was as if the winds had blown a path to the door of the car. I brushed off what little snow was there and high-tailed it back to my warm car.

I made my way to car #4, expecting it to be plowed in. Driving through the slushy oatmeal of snow on the road was an adventure. All the melting has made the roads very slick under the new snow. Other than a good four foot wide swath of packed snow blocking the driveway, the parking lot is clear. There is a small path of snow around the car, but nothing even ON the vehicle. Shovel snow from beneath the tires. Back into the warm car, on to the next one.

And thats when it happened. My car got stuck in the driveway. No worries, get out, get the shovel, start digging; I've lived in the Twin Cities my entire life — I can do this. The snow is like pebbles of cement though, and as I dig I hear a crack. My shovel looked like a broken window, cracked from the handle and spidering down through the plastic blade.

As I surveyed the situation to see where I could hand dig, he came running across the busy street, carrying a small steel spade. He started to dig around my tires, and we worked together to rock the car and dig out the belly of my jalopy, trying to time everything to the traffic on Park Avenue. Finally we both felt the car lurch out of the snowbank. He gave me a thumbs up, and had to get his name. Kevin. Thanks Kevin!

On to the last car, #17 at Augsburg. Again, the lot was plowed, leaving a neat and perfect lil trail of snow about six inches around the car. The car was covered with snow, looking like a piece of candy covered in sugar. Nothing a good snow
brush couldn't handle.

My work done, I realize the temp is starting to rise. It's 8:30 a.m. They are even talking about it getting warmer throughout the day on the radio as I climb back into my car to head home. At home, I let my broken shovel get in one last good swipe around my house, just to be sure the mailman will deliver my mail today. My house is quiet, family still sleeping. A snow day for all, and a good time to blog.

(A note from the East Coast editor: eight inches of fluffy snow, despite what the teevee news says, is not "Snowmageddon." A stalled ocean storm pumping in two feet of heavy, wet snow on April Fools Day—Surprise!—in the northeast probably does qualify. So does the Halloween Blizzard of 1991. As does the Armistice Day Blizzard in 1940. Or the Blizzard of '78, of which any mention of similarity, 30-plus years later, sends the entire city of Boston to the grocery store to buy out every loaf of bread and gallon of milk.

(Less than a foot of snow predicted several days out, however, does not deserve a name.)

Note form the author - blame the Star Trib, I didn't name it! :op

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