Monday, January 31, 2011

I just... I can't... WE HAVE NO SNOWBLOWER

Our snowblower broke before the first storm, the one right after Christmas. It was a hand-me-down from my in-laws who felt so guilty about it being broken that they practically had to be physically restrained from driving up fifty miles through the snowstorm to lend us their working one, and take ours to a repair shop. "Don't be silly!" we laughed. "We are young and strong!"

Here's what we got for our hubris:

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That is a photo taken at my eye level from the narrow walkway in between the eight-foot snow mountain in our front yard and the four-foot wall of plowed snow on the sidewalk's edge. Do you see that piece of a window at the very top? That is the living room window for the downstairs apartment; an apartment for which the ground floor starts three steps up. This is what happens when you have a teeny tiny front yard in which to put a four-car driveway's worth of snow. And this pile was built BY HAND.

We used to be young and strong. Now we are just young. OK, I suppose TECHNICALLY we are probably young and stronger if you take into account the actual effect of weight-lifting on a person's muscle mass, but why are you trying to rain on my pity parade? WE ARE WEARY.

The best part of all of this is how we have been trying to find somewhere to take our broken snowblower for repairs, but literally have not had time to load it up and drive it somewhere in between snowstorms. But last week we finally found a guy located a mere three miles from our house, and better yet, he was going to be open on Saturday! Unfortunately, Jack had to go to the doctor on Saturday for what turned out to be a massive ear infection, so by the time we were able to drive the snowplow over to the repair guy, it was 11:50 am. He was leaving at 12:30. This was a problem, because we had to dig the snowplow out of the shed before we could load it into Andrew's car and drive it over, and we couldn't do it in time. Did you get that? We didn't have time to shovel out the snowblower in time to get the snowblower over to the repair guy. Irony! Don't you love it? (I feel I should probably note here that I am typing "we," but I really mean "Andrew." ANDREW didn't have time to dig out the snowblower and load it into the car. I was not going to be involved in the digging or the loading. In my defense, I was also sick all week and still recovering. Fun times!)

ANYHOO. Andrew was going to try to drop it off on the way home from work yesterday, but the repair guy was out delivering repaired snowblowers to other, luckier snowblower-owners, so instead, Andrew had to just drive the snowblower back and forth to work, and then back and forth again today. (The good news there is that he apparently will drop ours off to us, assuming he ever gets a chance to fix it.) We can't drop it off TODAY of course, because it is snowing. Again. Naturally. As you all already know, because we are in the midst of a one-two wintery punch of national and historic proportions.

What all this means is that we will be throwing the snow, shovelful-by-shovelful, on top of the eight feet of snow already in our front yard. And then I will have a turn driving the snowblower back and forth to work before we're able to drop it off, God willing, on Thursday. We'll have to rush, because I hear there's a storm coming on Saturday. Sob.

But! I think I have decided to run a contest. Let's all place bets on the date the last bit of snow will melt from our front yard. I have made a rough estimation of the volume of snow in the mound. At this moment, I'd estimate our yard to be about 10x10 feet, and the pile to be 8 feet tall at its peak. If we assume a perfect pyramid with a square base, that is 267 cubic feet of snow. This is probably pretty close; the pile is of course not peaked in the center, it lists to one side. And neither is our yard a perfect square, but one side is probably longer than 10 feet, so I think this a reasonable estimate. What is for sure is that there is a hell of a lot of snow in my front yard.

And of course, this doesn't include the snow falling right now or what will fall all day tomorrow, so I'll be back with an update and more photos.

Right now, my guess is May 27.

See you all in the spring.

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6 comments:

Becky said...

I can't remember what part of the country you are in, but I'm going to go with May 16th. I'm hoping we have a spring like last year's, with no snow after February, until Mother's Day weekend.
Also, why is the sign in the background done so poorly? Go Children Slow? Seriously, local government people.

Carmen said...

My guess is May 5th. I also have to comment on the sign in the background. What the heck is that supposed to mean? Is it telling the children to go slowly? The cars? Either way - confusing & GAH!

Sarah in Ottawa said...

Maureen, I have NOTHING BUT SYMPATHY. I should post pictures of the house from the winter of 2007-08 -- 14 FEET OF SNOW fell.

We moved in to the house at the end of August, and like fools we DIDN'T get a snowblower. By the time we decided to, they were sold out. And so we shovelled every last inch of the stupid snow. Our double car driveway became a single car driveway as there was nowhere else to put the snow, and we had 12 foot snowbanks on either side. It got to the point where I would stand on the top of the bank and try to condense the snow while Dave heaved more and more on top. The highlight was one storm that dumped 80 centimetres of snow (nearly 3 feet) in 36 hours. We shovelled 9 TIMES over that storm.

I feel you, is what I'm saying. Prayers are heading your way!!

A'Dell said...

OH MY GOSH. That is so much freaking snow! I just...no. There is no way. I will never move further north than I already am.

Andrew said...

I actually think that the yard is 20x20, so the total cubic feet is closer to 3200. Considering its not a perfect cube, lets call it 1500-2000 cubic feet of snow.
-Andrew

Tracy said...

I cannot fathom the height and width of that pile. Nor can I figure out how quickly it will melt in any scientific fashion. But I will bet it will be April 15. Just to be different.