Sunday, December 28, 2008

Forty Year Blizzard

I was so excited when the weather forecast a few weeks ago predicted snow. The morning I woke up to see white, fluffy flakes coating everything and still falling I went out with the camera and trekked all over. We only got a few inches that day, but the cold weather stuck around in a very uncharacteristic fashion. We wound up with something like a foot of snow, an odd inch or so of ice, and plenty of steadily below-freezing mercuries before Christmas week was over.
I braved the worst of the storm to trek to work by streetcar, bus, and train, with a fair amount of walking tossed in for good measure. The city slowed to a creep during the worst days, with lots of hospital employees sleeping at work, most of the restaurants closed, and skiers and snowshoers in the streets.
I woke yesterday to pleasant temperatures near fifty, and a Portland that looked more familiar without its coating of snow. The detritus left behind made it look like people had believed the snow would remain forever: cigarette butts, trash, and other messes that people would normally pick up, now exposed by the thaw.

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