The largest recorded single-day snowfall in Ottawa’s history. That was today. As of 5:00 p.m., they already had 46 cm, obliterating the 1947 record of 40.6 cm.
I cleared snow this morning so that I could drive Jacob to school, and Andrea to the bus. Ran a couple of errands afterwards, not great weather for driving but not horrendous. Came back home, did a bunch of stuff around the house, and watched it pile up.
I was a bit anxious about picking Jacob up at the end of the day, with the school buses obviously and needfully cancelled. I cleared the driveway again around 2:30, and headed for J around 3:00, for what is normally a 10 minute drive.
Took me 50 to get there. It was wintastrophe out there. Snowmageddon. And a hundred words you can’t say on TV, unless it’s HBO. I had enormous trouble just getting the car out of the neighbourhood, and had no idea how I was going to get it back in with the snow levels rising and no snowplows for side streets or even main streets (!) in sight. Parked a block from the school and waded through the snow on a local road to get the cub, back to the car, relatively painless. Then – the trip home.
I circled thinking I might park in the big lot nearby, at least for awhile, but no, they hadn’t cleared anything all day either. Another loop and stopped at the gas station nearby, with some difficulty on entry and exit, to fill up the small gas tank I use to refill the snowblower. I figured I could get close to the house, go until I got stuck, and then take Jacob on into the house until Andrea came home and then go rescue the car. I was really leery about getting stuck on any side roads with the cub in the car and I stuck to the biggest heaviest roads I could find until I got home.
Then, I ran the first half-block like a gauntlet. Full speed of about 10 kms an hour but enough momentum to get me to the corner. Then it was 10 feet forward, 8 feet back. 10 feet forward, 8 feet back. 10 feet forward, 8 feet back. I knew once I got around the corner on my street that I had cleared a decent space in front of the house and my neighbour had done the same. Not completely but it would let me get a run at my driveway. Except for the idiot who saw me coming and then pulled right up like I had any shot of moving out of her way. She eventually was persuaded to move back, I gunned until I got in the driveway and into the garage.
And I literally wept with joy. I was quite emotional, really. I was so gratified that I got Jacob home safe, no issues with him stuck at the school, or us hiking through snow drifts, or any giant worries of catostrophe lurking in every snowbank I went through. He was home.
Then I switched to worrying about Andrea. I just wanted her home. She was stuck in Gatineau for a long time, then downtown for a long time, and then she was ON A BUS! That would eventually drop her near the house and then she slogged her way to our neighbourhood where the car lot was forming at the corner with lots of other people whose 10 foot / 8 foot approach had not been as successful as mine. I was very relieved when she made it home.
Was it earthquakes, tornado, tsunami levels of risk out there? Nope. But still very grateful to have my family safe at home and huggable. Hope everyone else made it home safe.