Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Ten Things Tuesday: Wintertime in New England

Here are some of the many things one learns when living in rural New England during the winter:

1. Not all snow shovels are the same. Sometimes you need width, sometimes not. Sometimes you need payload, sometimes you have to sacrifice it for endurance. Sometimes you need something that glides or plows, and what's on the bottom of the shovel matters. Aluminum or steel lasts longer, but catches on everything. Plastic is smooth to push, but wears out. It's complicated.

2. Staying ahead of the snow is good. It is counterintuitive, but the amount of time and energy required to manually move 12 inches of snow is greater than that required for 2 inches of snow six times.

3. Fireplace ashes make excellent anti-slip material. They're also much better for the environment than salt or sand or other chemicals.

4. The plow truck will time its run precisely to coincide with your completion of the driveway. I don't know how this happens. It's like magic.

5. Proper church attire may include boots from L. L. Bean.

6. Sometimes, it is best NOT to snovel. A base layer of compact snow can, on occasion, make later removal easier and keep dirt and gravel driveways from being rough and chewed up. This is as great a hazard as ice because you can twist an ankle and fall, spilling your groceries all over the driveway. Don't ask how I know this.

7. On occasion, the routine of work and school must yield to Mother Nature. This is accepted and enjoyed by most.

8. You should look up when passing under buildings, to make sure there are no icicles that might fall on you.  Especially if those icicles are the size of you.

9. It is a wise person who gets the wood in during the spring.

10. Keep the cold water running just a titch if the temperature dips down too far. A small stream from the faucet will keep the pipes from freezing.

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