Monday, February 12, 2007

Finally some new posts!

I have arrived in the great white north, to a welcome of a few feet of snow, along with a forecast of temperatures to be around -18C (0 F) come tomorrow. The trip up was largely uneventful, at least the last leg of it, not counting the effort to park the truck once I arrived. Unfortunately pick-ups are not made for good handling or good traction in snow and ice.

The first leg of the trip on the other hand was quite eventful. Driving through Oklahoma around OKC with freezing mist and frozen roads made for a long stessful drive. I was one of the more cautious driving at 20mph at most for the better part of four hours. Most of the rest, especially the foolhardy four-wheel drive owners I passed at some point with them either stuck in a ditch or part of multi-car accidents.

A full week in Wichita resulted in a few all too brief visits with dear friends, and a new relatively high end bathroom for my mother. What was a make do basement bath, is now an elegant bath with rich deep green walls (409-7) with a new pedestal sink, new faucet, new mirror and light, as well as the addition of crown molding with several corner/cornice pieces. The final new addition is that of a new floor, which is a leather treatment floor protected by polyurethane. The end result is a surprising gem of a bathroom where it is quite unexpected: the basement.

Weather left me in Indy for a couple of extra days, but that simply allowed for more time with good friends there.

Today being the first full day here, I took the opportunity to shovel snow away from the truck to make it easier to unload, as well as move to allow the snowplow to get to where it needs to get. Fortunately unlike the snow I am familiar with from Kansas and other locales, this was very light very fluffy snow which made for quick and easy shoveling. That said, I did discover a layer of snow which held together much like the blocks of snow that they use for igloos. Yes I was tempted to build one, or at least see what I could do, but other than the drive there is no clear spot, and even with the snow being light, it is still a few feet deep so more effort would be necessary to clear a spot than I would care to do for a silly experiment that only a damn southerner would do..

Not wanting to be out in the extreme cold tomorrow, I also decided to try moving through the deep snow to see just what it would take. That experiement was very short lived. About ten steps into it and I understood completely that short of life and death, there was little if anything that would encourage me to try to get anywhere that way. So I took advantage of the generous offer of my hosts and tried a pair of snowshoes. Now these are not the fancy new fangled ones with the bells and whistles and a 20 hour Tivo built in, nope, these are the snow shoes you see in the movies: oval shaped bound leather and wood.

Well they do wonders I will say that. These are probably to small for someone of my size, but still they were a vast improvement over trying to walk without them. I headed out into the virgin snow where I could see snow banks at least 4-5 feet deep (my best guess, but I would not be surprised to find that they are deeper). After walking about the area, not even venturing into the woods where I would normally have gone, I decided that the smart move was to head back while I still had enough energy. I know it does not sound like much work, but even now as I type this I am quite weary and can tell that tomorrow I will feel the effects of the exertion. Still, a good experience and I look forward to a bit more of it after this artic front passes.

So for now, and likely the next few days I will be staying inside enjoying the remarkable warmth coming from the small air-tight stove which more than adequately heats the entire house. More on that later.

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