American Elephants


OMG! There’s Snow In the Forecast by The Elephant's Child

Sorry about the light blogging, I just had eye surgery, and I get to be erratic. I can see fine out of one eye, and the other one will improve gradually.

We have snow in the forecast, starting later tonight and theoretically over when it starts raining around 10 a.m. Forecasts are meant to be helpful, but seldom, unfortunately, accurate. Seattle was a city famously built on seven hills, if I remember correctly, but then they eliminated some hills and built bridges and tunnels, and suburbs grew and they all had their own hills.

People who come from other parts of the country laugh at Seattleite panic when it snows, but unfortunately those who panic are just sensible and stay home when it snows. I grew up in Idaho at a little over 4000′ elevation, and we almost always had snow by Thanksgiving, which lasted until Easter. We were equipped for Winter, snow tires, a snowplow that fitted on the front of the Jeep pickup that followed the beloved Model A truck that also had its own snowplow. Sometimes when the snow was heavy, my dad would get up in the middle of the night to plow. Have been snowed in with a slide down the road a ways, but we had plenty of snow shovels, and the Jeep had a winch. Winter work, but not a real problem.

At work, I was astonished when the office emptied at 3:00 when it started to snow, and those who lived some distance away just planned to spend the night. I went home, and picked what I believed to be the mildest hill (I live on a hill, and no direction is good). I headed up the hill and was sure I would make it, when a school bus appeared, sliding, at the top of the hill. I backed down and got to a curb at the bottom. The bus started slowly down (too much brake) and it started skidding and headed straight for me. The bus was almost empty, but in the back was one very small boy, looking terrified out the window. The bus came within about three feet and swerved to the opposite side of the street and hit a car parked there. I walked home.

This is several years old, but typical.

ADDENDUM: My apologies to the weather forecasters—they were right on target. Snow arrived on schedule, in very modest amounts, and the rain arrived on schedule to wash away the road hazards. (at least at my house) Other areas may not have been so lucky, and other areas have steeper hills.

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3 Comments so far
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Hope you’re doing well after your surgery.

Traffic on snowy roads around here is much the same. I tell people that we’re far enough north to get snow, but far enough south to not know how to deal with it.

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Comment by Lon Mead

Thank you. I’m fine, just have to put drops in my eye many times a day. Cataract. They run in my family, so it was expected.

It’s a change when you arrive in Seattle thinking you know how to deal with snow.

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Comment by The Elephant's Child

Seattle snow isn’t that bad.

Seattle drivers, on the other hand….

*Shudder*

(Yes, that’s a shorter version of your utterly terrifying bus story.)

My husband still complains about the “gee, it hasn’t rained for two days, suddenly half the population forgets how to drive in rain” effect that happens there– a quarter drive like it’s not raining even if you can’t see a hundred feet, a quarter slam on their brakes if it’s a drizzle, the other half is left trying to avoid an accident.

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Comment by Foxfier




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