Monday, March 7, 2011

The Compass Points North

For someone who complains about the cold, I have spent a lot of time this winter going to winter rather than fleeing the season. I am currently in Burlington, Vermont, witnessing a record-breaking storm that has dumped – as of 11:00 a.m. this morning – 22 inches of snow on top of an already snow-covered landscape. Hub and I are at our son and daughter-in-law’s for what was supposed to be a quick visit before we drove further north. We are on our way to a cross country ski center for our first Road Scholar/Elderhostel experience.
We arrived in Burlington yesterday afternoon. Our initial plans were for a leisurely Sunday drive. Saturday night our son called to inform us the forecast called for about six inches of snow beginning Sunday afternoon. We decided to leave early Sunday morning and get to Burlington before the snow.
We were on the road by 6:30 a.m. We stopped at a diner for a quick breakfast, made another brief stop at a Thruway rest area and kept driving. It was raining most of the way but it was a light, steady rain. About 50 miles south of Burlington rain turned to snow. It had only recently started so the roads were not yet snow covered. As we pressed on, the black top turned white.
Twenty miles outside of Burlington the snow was lightly falling, the road was plowed and we felt as if the worst had passed. We made a quick stop at a fabulous café for a sandwich and finished our trip.
We awoke this morning to a winter wonderland. It was snowing and everything was completely covered. My son and his wife are Vermonters at heart. We all went out for breakfast, slowly driving downtown. We drove into the parking garage but it was full. City residents can park their cars in the garages free during snowstorms. The policy allows the streets to be cleared.
 Vermonters, and especially Burlington folk, are hearty, young people. The restaurant was busy, full of people in full winter gear enjoying a day off from school and work. My son received an e-mail message to work from home today. The university was closed. I’m sure most businesses were closed. After breakfast we walked across the street to the co-op City Market and wandered around. There were quite a few people there too. A lot had walked, a few drove, and some had skied to the store.
We finally made it back to the house. Hub and I were not going anywhere. We called the ski center and were told the combination of snow and high winds made driving extremely difficult. The police temporarily closed the highway. We settled in for the day.
Tomorrow morning we head north. We will be in snow-covered winter forest lands. Cross country skiing, snowshoeing, a yoga class or two, eating. I am hoping I have enough warm clothes. I figure if it gets too cold (if I get too cold) I can wander inside and retreat with my book, magazines, computer (there is wifi but no cell service way up wherever we will be).
Yesterday morning we left our little house south of here, no precipitation in sight, the buds just beginning to appear on trees and tiny shoots emerging out of the ground. I think I am crazy…

1 comment:

  1. I just finished looking at the on-line photos from the Burlington Free Press. Not missing it.