Think all this snow only causes snow blindness? For me it’s been more like snow timelessness. When a writer gets housebound due to a snowstorm, the thoughts and words start to careen and swirl just like the blizzarding snow outside. It gets especially difficult to organize those words into something meaningful with a deadline looming—and the pitter-patter of little feet that keep coming downstairs, wondering whether there will be a snow day or delay tomorrow.
Oh the weather outside was frightful. But inside, it was…not so delightful. Especially when it was, what, the forty-third freaky storm of the century that was bearing down upon us and we’re only 13 years into the century thus far? It sure can cause a girl’s already active mind to wander.
Waiting for a storm to strike in this part of Connecticut has become a bit like Russian roulette or some form or water torture. You stay on constant alert, wondering just exactly when (not if) the power will go out. Power-loss becomes a certainty, especially with each and every flicker the lights make.
It doesn’t help reading everyone else’s storm-watch posts on Facebook. Two out of every three of those posts is about the weather—armchair meteorologists start posting just as many pictures of weather maps as they usually do of their kids. Others compare generator size, detailing which of their many appliances are hooked up to the new, must-have Connecticut accessory. There’s lots of generator braggadocio out there, as well as generator envy.
Speaking of pictures, isn’t it cool to see the rulers that everyone you know owns? With a big storm like Nemo, we all had the same idea of sticking our rulers into the rapidly mounting snow. For a day, ruler pictures outnumbered pet pictures.
That Internet phenomenon quickly righted itself as soon as the snow stopped and the dogs needed to go outside. Lots of adorable video of dogs romping in the snow started popping up online—plus all your human friends got to see the exact spot on your back deck, right outside the door, where each of your four legged friends chose to relieve themselves when they couldn’t make it through the two feet of snow.
It’s the craziness inspired by a storm named after a Disney character. Who was the twisted weather professional who thought that one up? I don’t know why they didn’t go all the way and decide to call it Superstorm Tinkerbell. Maybe the next one will be Hurricane Bambi.
The storm did help me come to the realization that, just like there are outdoor cats and indoor cats—I’m an indoor mom. I envy all you outdoor moms who get right out there and sled and shovel and make snow angels with the best of ‘em. I was desperately thankful that my husband made it home from his business trip to Chicago before Nemo hit, changing his airline ticket in order to get home Thursday before the storm rolled into Connecticut a day later. That didn’t stop me from buying those bright red snow shovels for each of my kids at Stop and Shop, just in case he couldn’t make it home in time. I figured it really wouldn’t have been breaking any child labor laws to have them clearing the front path, would it?
Being snow bound does make for a productive indoor mommy, however. I started cleaning out and reorganizing the basement playroom. I was able to amass hefty to-donate piles of toys the kids have outgrown, and I located lots of missing puzzle pieces and reunited all those random little plastic game pieces and dice with their appropriate board games. I rearranged some living room furniture and actually sewed a window covering for my powder room.
Just call me “Laura Ingalls Herve.”
Well, it’s not like I went commando and completely abandoned technology, however. I did spend a fair amount of time online, since we wound up not losing power in Wilton. I do want to commend First Selectman Bill Brennan and the town emergency response management. Now that we have a town Facebook emergency page as well as frequent Code Red calls and emails, I think they’ve stepped up their communication about how Wilton responds in a storm.
Kudos should also go to the Wilton School administration, which started its own Facebook page (hallelujah!) and has been more responsive of late. The page has helped the network of parents using the social media outlet as its prime source of information. Calling Monday’s weather change for school on Sunday night was also an admirable move, one I think many of us really appreciated.
There’s another new Facebook page that many Wilton parents have found indispensible. Called Wilton CT 411, it’s a group page that acts as a community message board, a place where Wilton residents can ask questions and get answers from their friends and neighbors. I recently got referrals for pediatric ophthalmologists; others have sourced sleep away camps and thoughts on Maria Coleman, the assistant principal at Wilton High School who will become principal at Middlebrook come September. The page was a great source for storm info and was the first place many people found out about today’s two-hour delay for school.
I guess Nemo did inspire some meaningful collection of words for this column, after all. Now that it’s finished, I thankfully I have two more hours for sleeping in, as I already know there’s a delay.