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Dear State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations:

Clearly you are not a state to do things by half measures.  It has been snowing now for 48 hours, and is showing no signs of stopping.  I am sorry that I ever doubted you. Though I am a bit stir crazy, I am still content.  As I pointed out to Gentleman Caller, snow days such as these really allow all of my food-hoarding and desire for sustainability to shine.  We are well fed, though finally out of pierogies, well entertained, well-rested, and well lubricated by alcohol.  Wee Watson (kitty), has been sleeping soundly on my Slanket, and though snow days are no different from his daily routine, I think he enjoys having me around.

We left the house for the first time, and ventured into the driveway to shovel and marvel at the wonder of nature.  I got to wear my water boots (which I always forget to do when it’s raining), and though they are not snow boots and my feet did get cold, they provided resistance against the wet, and a lot of traction.

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I get bored by shoveling and decided to take pictures instead.

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Winter wonderland.

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Snow-covered boughs.

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Snow-covered cars.

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Also, now that the snow has turned to a rain/snow mix, I was able to make a delightful snowman named Orville.

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ORVILLE!

What I like best about you, Rhode Island, is the fact that when snow days like this happen, the Governor discourages me from traveling unless absolutely necessary, which makes this house-bound sloth seem like I’m just doing my part.  I like that you have the highest unemployment rate in the nation, which means that I have very little reason to leave the house since I have five days off a week. I like that you waited to give me a snow day until after I finished up all my schoolwork for the semester so I can bask in guilt-free slacking; and I like that the shoveling I did was a full-body workout meaning I don’t have to feel guilty about two days of constant eating paired with very little movement.

Thank you, Rhode Island, you have made me very happy.

I do not care for snow.  It is heavy, and inconvenient, and makes the cuffs of my pants soggy since my short little legs are never long enough to use up all the inches in my inseam. Even my near constant wearing of heels because I cannot walk well in flat shoes (yes, it’s weird) doesn’t stop my pants getting sodden and heavy and blechy.  I do not like shoveling or scraping off my car, but there is nothing better than spending an evening sitting on the couch, reading while it quietly snows all around you and the cold feels less intense and the nightime isn’t as dark and depressing.

Rain is nice too, but snow is quieter.

Last year there was a “blizzard” in Rhode Island.  I drove all the way to Newport, not knowing that this was coming, and then 1 hour into our work Don the appraiser informed me, “I got gas, I got my hair cut, I got bread and milk– I’m set.” This was the first I’d heard of the Rhode Island need to buy bread and milk before any kind of serious weather activity, but I still think it’s weird.  The blizzard, which in North Dakota would have been called “a dusting” or “Tuesday” dumped 6 inches and created such a panic that it took me 8 hours to get from Newport to Providence, a trip which usually takes me 45 minutes.  Thankfully, I had a full tank of gas and a sandwich, or I would have been much more uncomfortable.  As it was, I kept listening to disc after disc of a crappy audiobook, and wondering why I wasn’t home yet.

When I did finally achieve my street, it was pristine– a perfect, untouched blanket of snow with the streetlights reflecting peacefully off of it.  It was bizarre, and apocalyptic.  Eventually, I passed two people dressed in full winter-weather gear trudging down the middle of the street.  They stopped and gawped at me like they’d never seen a car before.  It was The Road Warrior, but with snow.

I got stuck in my own driveway, and went inside to reflect on the day with a frozen pizza and a bottle of wine.  In that moment, I was very apprehensive about my adopted home of Rhode Island.  The weather phenomenon I had been most worried about was hurricanes– blizzards are no big deal to me, but I supposed if everyone else goes into a panic, it doesn’t do me much good to stay calm.

The following week at work, all anyone could talk about was the blizzard, and I really don’t feel I got as much sympathy as I should have.  I kept explaining over and over that this amount of snow was not a big deal, I’ve seen way worse, and then older co-workers would describe “the big one” back in the day, and look at me like you poor kid, you have no idea.

“But, once we were without power for 36 hours,” I protested, “In -20 temperatures.  I watched my brother slowly go insane.  We did shadow puppets for five hours– maybe longer– time had no meaning!”

Nothing.

I have learned, you cannot tell old people about weather, because they’ve always seen more than you, and simply do not care to hear you prattling on.

So a while ago, I was at the gym, and CNN was telling me all about how the Midwest was buried under feet of snow.  Instead of feeling smug that I wasn’t in that situation, I felt a bit jealous.  Of course, when I talked to my parents and brother they informed me that “yeah, it was about a foot or so, no big deal.”

I just really want to sit in my reading chair, wrapped in my Slanket, and watch the snow fall. I don’t want to do anything else with it– make a fort, shovel it etc. I just want to watch it for an evening, and then I’ll be good.  I wonder if that will happen, or if I’ll end up having to drive in it again.