Sunday, December 18, 2005

Snow? No!

Today was the last day that my family could go Christmas shopping as a family (and the first day, too, actually). I thought we'd averted a weekend fiasco last night when we were finishing the Christmas tree. I was trying to put the cap back on a glass bulb when my finger slipped and hit the razor edge of the bulb lip. I looked at my finger and thought it was fine until about 10 seconds later when I realized that blood was dripping down my finger. I couldn't see the actual wound very well because it was so finely sliced and thought of sitting in the ER for hours on a Saturday night, waiting for stitches before my finger either became gangrenous or I exsanguinated, whatever came first. After I cleaned it and triaged myself I decided that I wasn't going to have to go in for it, thankfully.

But was the fiasco averted? Oh no, silly! This AM we had a one-minute power outage and my mom called to tell me that Portland was having a wind storm and an ice storm was going to hit around 6pm. I told David "Let's go now!" figuring that we could get back an hour or two before six and be safe. The forecasters around here tell us something's going to happen but it usually doesn't hit until several hours later, if at all.

So we had hit two stores and were sitting at a Spaghetti Factory when it began to snow. It was 1:30. By the time we got out to our car, there was about 1/4" on the ground and then it began to rain and snow together which is a horrible mix that freezes into sheets of ice immediately upon contact with any surface. Since it was at least one hour back home, we decided to go to two more stores that were about 3/4 mile away. It took an hour to get there. Then we hit the highway back home, speeding along at 3 mph, watching the cars in front of us making forward and sideways movements simultaneously.

Perhaps you, dear reader, live in Montana, and you reasonably snort in derision at an inch of ice and snow on the ground. However, we have two things against us in Portland: 1) it doesn't snow (or ice) here very often. Winter in Western Oregon usually means rain and moderate temperatures. And, 2) a large portion of our population is made up of Californians who, bless their hearts, scream at the sight of white powder falling from the sky and landing under their tires.

We got home safely and are snug in a warm house and grateful. Next year I'm buying everything online. Right.


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