I think my Florida family has forgotten the “joys” of winter in the Far North. So. . . .
It was a rare sunny day up here in the Far North. Shortly after noontime, with the sun trying to be “high” in the sky, the shadows of the trees stretched across the snow-buried lawn and across my driveway.
And then I noticed: the way out of my driveway was narrowing with each passage of the snowplow. If I didn’t do something, I’d be backing into the snowbanks.
Our streets were not going to be easy to drive on.
Neighbors were out, though, taking snow-walks – carefully in the frozen ruts – and they were all talkative, all with the same (justifiable) complaints about the long, severe winter we’re having. I smiled and nodded in rather silent agreement, because I didn’t want to admit what a GREAT winter I think this is for skiing and ice skating and exercise and fresh air and the fireplace and. . . . (Am I the only one having fun?)
No. They saw difficulty. Slipping and sliding, shivering, shoveling and — ice dams! I asked a neighbor if he knew where I could buy a roof rake, which had become quite rare these days, and he said I could borrow his!
So now I had my neighbor’s roof rake with a thirty foot long aluminum pole to vault up onto the roof. I thought about it for a while…thought about things like “technique” and how can “aluminum” be so heavy!
I got it going, though.
And if you back up holding the pole, you inevitably back the bottom end of the pole up into something, and if you do it fast enough you launch yourself upwards like an untrained pole vaulter. Move slowly.
But I got the hang of it and was making progress. But my front door was locked. My side door was blocked. And I had just closed the garage door so I wouldn’t be getting snow piles in the garage. Smart. Too smart. I decided to keep working and not panic, but there was that gnawing feeling about the back deck door…..Did I feed the birds that morning? Had I re-locked the deck door? Had I locked myself out – out in the cold?
Ice dams on the back deck.
An hour more of doubt – an hour more of shoulder-breaking, upward-heaving pole-smacking roof work in the front…squinting against the only sun we had this month (!!) and then I checked the back deck.
Yes, ice dams there too. Somewhere between 20 and 30 inches of snow and snow drifts on the roof back there too.
And an unlocked door.
Altogether a good and interesting day.