Friday, February 22, 2008

Inclement Weather

We awoke this morning to freezing rain and a wintry mix throughout the area. Schools throughout the area from Frederick MD to Winchester VA to Culpeper VA to Fredericksburg are closed….except for Washington DC schools. All colleges in the area are closed. All country governments in the area are under liberal leave and a two hour delayed opening except for the Washington DC government. Once again the Washington DC government and school boards march to a happlyland drummer by expecting children to walk down ice covered sidewalks and cross streets where cars are sliding.

Liberal leave is a day when you can stay home and have it credited as a sick day. One does not need to inform one’s supervisor as it is assumed that most people will not be coming to the office.

I left home early to get into the office ahead of what traffic may be on the roads mid morning. Indeed the traffic was light, so light that it was lighter than it is on Sunday morning. With being out of town a good part of this week and all but Friday next week, today will be a good day to plow through the mail and get memos/letter drafted without being interrupted.

It is interesting how this area handles inclement weather. Road departments put salt on the roads by the buckets full. From last week’s storm the roads are still covered in white with the salt so much so that yesterday traveling to and from work you could see salt dust hanging in the area as cars stirred it. Though there is already plenty of salt on the main roads, more again is being applied in great volume while the side roads and sidewalks are totally ignored.

Five to eight hours ahead of a storm you will find legions of salt trucks and plows sitting along the side of the road waiting for the storm to hit. Early Wednesday evening there was a chance we would receive some light snow. On my way back from Warrenton mid-evening I passed a group of 8 trucks and plows parked along the shoulder waiting for the light flurry, a flurry that did not materialize.

If we received three inches of snow the area would be virtually paralyzed for one to two days. If we received a third of what Watertown NY has received I fear it would be a National Disaster locally for a month or more. Outside the area, even though the Federal Goverment would be closed for weeks, I am confident that life in the nation would continue on fine without the nation's government meeting.


Christian Camuti said...

No school here in Connecticut as well. The roads were just wet and slushy in spots, but after lunch it began to snow harder and stick in earnest.

I laugh how the CT Yankees here react to the snow. I haven't even worn boots yet, and people are stressing about the "bad" storm.

Dave said...

Chris, if we get a dusting of snow or a little sleet my secretary does not venture out of her home. She is a hoot.

Barbara said...

what a bunch of whimps!!!!

Evie said...

We've got a bunch of Texans who began working at our center last summer (they followed the new administrator here). They absolutely freak out at the possibility of snow or ice. When the real thing happens, they are paralyzed. I went to the office yesterday, then came home early. We had permission to leave "early enough to make sure you can drive home safely" - in the rain/sleet. Since I had finished all my work, I called it quits around 2PM.

Stephen said...

I'm afraid that Calgarians are little better than some of you Yanks. Being an arid environment, snow is not a commodity that is in great supply. Yes Barbara, we are whimps but I think we are a little hardier than the Washington area. Image what it would be like to cope with -49C there!