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arhyalon

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12:01 am: Snow, Glorious Snow

After almost a week of being snowed in, we were running out of groceries. So, I dug out one of the surviving toboggans (sledding on a very steep, icy hill earlier in the season had ripped up most of them, including my 30 year old one from when I was a kid.) It had lost its string on the icy hill, so I found a rope and tied it around the front of it...not ideal for sliding, as the rope was now under the toboggan.

I took the two oldest kids with me, to have more hands to carry stuff back. I dragged the toboggan there, and we all shopped together. Then, we tried to start back.

We had gotten too much stuff. The toboggan was really heavy and hardly slid. I started out pulling it, grunting against the rope, but Ping-Ping took it away from me and took off. Boy, she was amazing. I alternated between helping her on the rope or carrying extra bags to make the toboggan lighter. Orville carried two bags.

This worked all the way across from the store and down the hill. It did not work on the upslope. We lightened the toboggan, left Orville with the extra bags, and ran relays.

 

Eventually, everything made it home. Here's a picture:


Ping-Ping dragging the toboggan.




Comments

[User Picture]
From:intheyear2004
Date:February 11th, 2010 05:31 am (UTC)

WOW!

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That's HARD shopping! No use of a car possible? We have lots of snow, too in Germany this year and driving is more like sledding in the snow or swimming through the mud when it's a bit warmer - but we still have cars! ;-)

I like this winter. When I was a kid in Hamburg we had so much snow in winter, the walls at the street side were a meter high after the snow plough went through. Then the older I got the warmer it became and less and less snow in winter. Now it's back to the old form. :-D
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:February 11th, 2010 05:35 am (UTC)

Re: WOW!

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Some people were driving, but we had a hill to go up and down. There was unplowed snow on top of packed-down ice, and we don't have snow tires. So, I didn't feel like risking it. Probably, we could have made it out okay, but...
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:February 11th, 2010 05:36 am (UTC)

Re: WOW!

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I should add that the problem was the local state road. It is a state road but not a major road. The state is out of money for snow removal, so they have not plowed it...not much anyway.
[User Picture]
From:intheyear2004
Date:February 11th, 2010 06:19 am (UTC)

Re: WOW!

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Same here. Only major roads are ploughed, the rest can see how they get along. Would you believe communities were running out of road salt this year? And we are living close to an old, but not exhausted salt deposit - it's a crazy world!
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:February 11th, 2010 06:24 am (UTC)

Re: WOW!

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Running out! You are lucky. We had to live in a box in the middle of the road. ("Cardboard box?" "Right." You were lucky!")

Sorry for the Monty Python intrusion, but...they won't use salt here. I think it has to do with environmental concerns, but I'm not sure. They sand occasionally, but they haven't even done that this time.

I salted the little patch of road out in front of our house after the previous snow. For two days, until more snow fell, I had the only open--no snow, no ice--section of road in the neighborhood.

Edited at 2010-02-11 06:24 am (UTC)
[User Picture]
From:intheyear2004
Date:February 11th, 2010 06:49 am (UTC)

Re: WOW!

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Yes, it was forbidden here for some time, too. But I think they developed something environmental friendlier or something (just changed the law again) and this winter they're salting major roads and Autobahns etc.
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:February 11th, 2010 06:52 am (UTC)

Re: WOW!

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Oh that's nice. Hope it happens here.
[User Picture]
From:juliet_winters
Date:February 11th, 2010 03:19 pm (UTC)

Re: WOW!

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We're out of your greater DC metro planning district. The line stops at the river.
So we aren't subject to the well-intended environmental rules which seem to result in safety issues and affordability issues.

I guess many people up there want it that way though. When I explained to a friend that we were lucky we didn't have to deal with emissions standards and could thus buy cars cheaply that had become unfit for Northern Virginia, she sniffed and replied that it wasn't really such a good thing. After all, now we were polluting our air more. Maybe, but we really do need transportation and our little bus system is not sufficient to the task.
It's these kinds of rules that make me realize that enforced global environmental standards will not work in my lifetime. Are they going to tell someone who has just saved up enough to afford a little car in Delhi to run as a taxi service to keep his family from starving that the price is now inflated ten times to cover the environmentally-friendly demands that are now standard in Seattle?
India isn't buying it. China is not buying it, and they don't have to. If we buy into it altogether, we are going to go broke.
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:February 11th, 2010 06:48 pm (UTC)

Re: WOW!

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That's one of the things about Environmentalists that really annoys me: Hey, now that I'm rich and can afford the best, you have to act like me or have nothing.

We should be cheering India on, not trying to drag them down. To an Indian, who is already amazed that American families have TWO CARS EACH, it must seem like the ultimate hypocracy.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:February 16th, 2010 12:37 am (UTC)

Re: WOW!

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I know I'm going to die fairly young because of chemical exposure and other things "afforded" to me for having been poor.

You shouldn't feel you have a right to treat people who are poor as anything less than the human beings they are. You should not be happy to dump your pollution on the poor as though they aren't human beings.
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:February 16th, 2010 03:44 pm (UTC)

Re: WOW!

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You seem confused by the subject.

We are not talking about Americans sending polution to India. We are talking about Americans not interfering with the Indians strive for progress.

There are many places in England and America that used to be really polluted that are not so bad now (like London.) We went through that. We can share our experience with countries that are only developing now, but we certainly should not make decisions for them about what is better, smog or cars.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:February 17th, 2010 12:06 am (UTC)

Re: WOW!

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It is our demand for goods and services that is causing the end result of pollution in India.

While some aspects of pollution may appear to be better in time, there are many that are not. Pollution from the air may be less in London, but what legacy lies in the soil and other elements? Why are those people who have not been exposed to urban pollution healthier than those who have been?

The stuff is in the water, for instance.

You say we should not make the decision for them about which is better, smog or cars, but we DO make that decision for them. We advertise our cars, for instance. Every day, we are deciding for them that they should live in polluted areas through our own demands for goods and services. You just have to follow the causal chain.
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:February 17th, 2010 01:21 pm (UTC)

Re: WOW!

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You think Americans are the masters of the Indians?

I cannot agree with that. We and they are free individuals. Our job is to live as well as we can and their job is to do the same.

We are not their masters and therefore cannot make decisions for them...either for good or for evil.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:February 11th, 2010 04:10 pm (UTC)

Re: WOW!

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Salt will kill off vegetation locally. I used to live in a place in NY where someone had put salt in a pile next to the end of the driveway. Nothing would grow there anymore. No grass, nothing. I don't know if anyone ever removed the contaminated soil and solved the problem, but for many, many years (at least 10) nothing grew in that patch.
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:February 11th, 2010 06:49 pm (UTC)

Re: WOW!

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large scale salt is definitely a problem. That's what you do if you don't want vegetation to grow...you salt the earth. That's what the Romans did to Carthage.

But some salt used wisely can really save lives.

[User Picture]
From:marycatelli
Date:February 11th, 2010 07:40 pm (UTC)

Re: WOW!

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that's why they plant rugosa roses in places like that
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:February 12th, 2010 02:38 pm (UTC)

Re: WOW!

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Just learned that they use salt in DC. Must just be here in North Virginia that we don't...or at least, I've never seen any.
[User Picture]
From:hannahsarah
Date:February 11th, 2010 09:39 am (UTC)
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Wow. Poor PingPing. She must be wondering what the frell she's gotten herself into!
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:February 11th, 2010 06:46 pm (UTC)
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She volunteered. I think she was proud to be able to do it.
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From:hannahsarah
Date:February 11th, 2010 07:02 pm (UTC)
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She should be proud, that looks like quite the shlep!

How is she doing? Not too homesick I hope.
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:February 11th, 2010 08:31 pm (UTC)
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She's doing really well. She's off with her English tutor right now, learning and having fun.
[User Picture]
From:juliet_winters
Date:February 11th, 2010 11:37 am (UTC)
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Guaranteed to give them bragging rights when they are older:
"When I was your age, I had to drag home groceries through 2 feet of snow...on a sled!"
[User Picture]
From:kokorognosis
Date:February 11th, 2010 04:26 pm (UTC)
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If it helps, I'd have gladly taken some of the snow. I was rooting for Columbus to get slammed. (My theory is that if we have to have snow, we should go whole hog.) Sadly, we've only got about a foot.
[User Picture]
From:bojojoti
Date:February 11th, 2010 07:01 pm (UTC)
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An adventure!
[User Picture]
From:jmward14
Date:February 11th, 2010 08:55 pm (UTC)
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Wow! What a great outing, something everyone will remember. :-)
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