Friday, February 14, 2014

You're not making it easier on yourself...

So, as it was getting dark yesterday afternoon around lunchtime, as it does here in far off frozen cold north yankeeland*, I debated taking the trash cans to the curb. I mean, I was already dressed, so it would have merely involved swapping my house slippers for boots and pulling on a coat...

"Nah," I reasoned, "I can do it in the morning."

Which is why I was in my pyjamas, cursing loudly as I fumbled into jeans and a hat and grumbled my way into my coat at 0730 today, with the sun not clear of the treeline and my ear hearing phantom diesel engines a block away. Or two blocks. Or maybe it was my imagination, but you never know when those guys are going to come, and so I'd better drag the cans to the curb.

The walk was slippery with fresh ice, where meltwater from the roof had refrozen overnight. With the sun technically up, the temperature had crept into official double digits at 10°F, but the wind chill stubbornly held at -1°F.

I cussed again as I nearly took a spill on the ice, but the cherry on the icing of the cake of the whole procedure was when I reached the Devil's Strip along the road, where fresh snow and the concomitant plowing since last week had erased the little trampled path I'd created for the cans. I taught the neighbor's dog a couple new words as snow overtopped first one, then the other hastily-slipped-on unlaced boot while I bulled the cans through the drifts to the curb.

The work done, I had to note that it was kinda pretty out, with the blush of dawn in the clear sky.

The southeast corner of the house sports a three-foot icicle...
...while Bobbi's rain chain on the northeast corner caused a whimsical ice pillar to form, connecting the roof to the ground.

Huck clearly thought I was nuts, being on the cold side of the window.
Next week I'm not going to wait 'til Friday morning to drag the trash cans out. I'm going to listen to my inner Protestant work ethic and take them to the curb the night before. Honest. Really. This time I mean it.


*This is where my readers in New Hamster and Alaska and Sweden and Canada tell me about how at this time of year they have to hike two miles uphill each way just to see a sunbeam at noon...

29 comments:

Jim said...

Consider yourself told. No matter how hard we try, we who bisect the equatorial/north polar angle find it difficult to empathize with the under-40 crowd. Sure, we send soothing words southward, but sometimes we don't really mean them.:)

Anonymous said...

This is the first time I've ever heard of a rain chain. Could someone elaborate on this?

As per the vow to get the trash out, I've made that self same promise to Valhalla more than once.....still the Gawds plague me with a pillow that actually grabs my head and keeps it horizontal.....ah

Kaeghl

doubletrouble said...

Oh yeah? Well at this time of year we have to hike two miles uphill each way just to see a sunbeam at noon.

Boat Guy said...

One reason I like the contested reaches of what used to solidly be God's Country - no matter how cold it is (leventy-below last week) we still get sun.
Course sometimes the wind that blows the clouds through gets a mite stiffish and that's not much fun...

Murray Cuthbert said...

I suppose this is where I say something about far off, frozen Confederate territory-'specially Fulton County.

Ahemmmmm.

John Peddie (Toronto) said...

Far off frozen Fulton County

billf said...

Speaking of trash collecting,mine is supposed to be at the curb on Thursday morning,but the town has a robo-calling system which alerted me Wednesday that trash pick-up would be one day late.Then on Thursday they changed it to next Monday.
When it snows in NC,everything stops for a week.

Paul said...

Might want to check the intake of the down spot. Usually a icicle there is a sign that leaves have plugged the out let in my part of iceland. Usually went you cut corners on the togging up in this weather you get the ice down the shorts.

Scott J said...

That icicle could certainly be used to cover up a mishap with your Red Ryder :)

Sport Pilot said...

Regrettably hindsight doesn't always motivate foresight...but for the record "been there, done that and feel your pain".

Anonymous said...

I think a legitimate View From The Porch would include a photo of you taking out the garbage in your housecoat and slippers!:)

SED

Baker M. Romeo said...

If you didn't knock down that giant icicle and use it to fence with imaginary ice-fiends, your inner child is dead, dead, dead!

Tam said...

"This is the first time I've ever heard of a rain chain. Could someone elaborate on this?"

Link added.

Anonymous said...

On the lake michigan shore, it doesn't matter where you hike. You just don't see a sunbeam until March

BryanP said...

A regular conversation in my head:

"Nah, that's future me's problem."

"CURSE YOU PAST ME!!!!!"

BryanP said...

A regular conversation in my head:

"Nah, that's future me's problem."

"CURSE YOU PAST ME!!!!!"

Anonymous said...

Did the ice detune the antenna?
MACVS2

Ancient Woodsman said...

"With the sun technically up..."

That sentence. Right there. Yup, pretty much explains this winter. Good writing, that. Made the whole piece.

Billll said...

I used to put the trash out the night before, but the foxes, coons, and stray dogs and cats got to liking me way too much.

I like things the way nature meant them to be in which the foxes, coons and occasional coyote eat the stray dogs and cats and the trash goes to the landfill.

Sherm said...

There's no point taking the cans out the night before when you know the weather will just do something nasty overnight that you'll still have to take care of in the morning. Waiting means you only have to mess with it once.

Kristophr said...

Here in Wyberia, the temp is climbing in to the 40s, and that fat white water is melting.

RKN said...

This is where my readers in New Hamster and Alaska and Sweden and Canada tell me about how at this time of year they have to hike two miles uphill each way just to see a sunbeam at noon...

Closer to four miles. ;-)

Matthew said...

What is this "sun" of which you speak?

;)

Nah, been getting brighter and brighter lately, I can feel my Vitamin D levels rising like the sap. Clear but cold though, as usual.

RKN said...

What is this "sun" of which you speak?

"The Alaskan awoke one late winter morning and looked to the sky, where he saw a bright light. And he knew, from books he had read, that must be the sun."

Moogie P said...

Most impressive icicle!

Anonymous said...

This reader in Norway is just going to let you off with me pointing my thumbtip at you a la Billy Jeff Clinton and saying, "Ah feel yer pain." :)

Matt G said...

My friend in Alaska is marveling at the violet flowers growing in her front yard, and wondering why we got all her winter.

Buzz said...

I like the rain chains, but more prefer the ones with bells and other pleasant noise makers. I first saw them in Japan years ago.

The problem being, they are either flat-out junk or mortgage-the-house prices.

Will said...

Might want to consider hooking up a garden hose to the hot water heater, and feeding it down the spouts to clear them. The gutters being full can cause water damage under the roof edge, as the ice in the downspouts tend to be the last thing that melts.
Not all gutter setups can cause this problem, but I've seen it, and it was expensive!