We don’t get a lot of real, a-foot-or-more snow days here in Northern Virginia, though the media constantly keeps us on our toes with dire warnings of another Snowmaggedon like the one we had four years ago. When is snows a little in this area, people panic. Schools close, radio and TV stations go on 24-hour alert with overly-made-up perky blonde women in anoraks forecasting doom and giving advice. Kitty litter in the trunk, bags of salt, fully charged cell phone, and maybe a roll of toilet paper in the glove box, just in case. Which is why, I suppose, moms and dads rush to stores and return staggering under the weight of two-hundred rolls of the stuff, preferably double-ply and scented. The liquor stores, which are run by the state, do a staggering business as well. Heaven forbid we be caught without a case or two of Smirnoff and Jim Beam in the basement.
Somehow, where I live, whenever it snows it’s like the first time ever. I’ve stopped trying to understand why.
All this is to say that last night we did get hit with about 12 inches of snow, with more forecasted later today. There was a brief blackout last night. This is the only thing that scares me about a serious snowfall, since a power outage leaves me with no furnace, and I have figured out that my place, if not heated, drops about one degree every ten minutes. Four years ago in December, the power lines went down and I spent close to five days in a truly awful motel. Yes, I know. Poor, poor, pitiful me.
Right now, everything, including the US Government in Washington, DC, a few miles away, has come to a total standstill. I sit in my kitchen, look out the window and see a god-damned winter wonderland. The snowplows have come by a time or two and my drive way is now blocked by a four-foot-tall wall of semi-frozen stuff.
So far this morning I have done two pages on a new novel, and contemplated a scene for a play I’m currently writing and which is due in early July. I have put together a stew, and shredded two pounds of celeriac to make celerie rave. I have cleaned out the fridge, swept the kitchen, laundered, had three cups of decaf, and read a story in The New Yorker on how Amazon is killing the book trade. And by the way, Jeff Bezos, I didn’t get my Washington Post today. Can you see about that since you’re the Post’s new owner?
I have exchanged text messages with a few people. I am already starting to get a serious case of cabin fever. I am scheduled to have surgery tomorrow and assume it is going to be cancelled, but when I call to find out, there doesn’t seem to be anyone handling the phones at my HMO.
The truth is, though, that I’m fortunate. There’s enough food in the freezer to last weeks. I recently added to my stash of fishsticks, which lately have become a staple, and I didn’t have to do a TP run. I have all that I need. There are plenty of books to be read and movies to be seen. My bandmates and I (Cash & Carry, check us out at http://www.sagnier.com/music/) are putting together some new songs and I need to practice my Dobro and pedal steel guitar licks. Last week I bought a build-it-yourself paper model of the Titanic. I also have to spend some time on a scale wooden kit of a trebuchet since it is my belief that every home should have one. There’s plenty to do, to eat, to read, watch and occupy my hands.
So what the hell. Let it snow.