SNOWMAGGEDON AFTERMATH UPDATE: A Shoveling Diary
What? No Facebook Live broadcast tonight (Fri, March 17)?
When Winter Storm Stella, which began Monday night (now I finally understand why Marlon Brando’s character, Stanley Kowalski — with hands painfully pressed against his temples — repeatedly screamed “Stella!” in “A Streetcar Named Desire”), was at its height on Tuesday, nobody (at least where I live) was out shoveling. But that was the last day this week that didn’t find me wearily wielding a snow shovel for hours. (I can’t afford a snowblower, so I must do my snow-removing duties “old school.”)
On Wednesday, though it was still furiously snowing after two feet had already piled up (four feet or more where the high winds created drifts), I labored for hours shoveling out to my driveway and then excavating my minivan from a huge snowdrift, though the still-unplowed roads were impassable. (Fortunately I didn’t end up needing to go anywhere.) Of course more snow got dumped on my minivan as the day progressed.
On Thursday (yesterday), after re-excavating my minivan, I was obliged by law (city ordinance) to shovel the nearly 200-foot sidewalk (yes, two-thirds of a football field; we’re cursed with a corner lot) from our driveway to our neighbors’ house (where reside several IHM Novus Ordo nuns — no kidding — connected with nearby Marywood University).
Just as I was finishing performing this particular penance, with perfect timing one of the nuns emerged from their home with a snow shovel and began gazing thoughtfully down the street at her car, which was hopelessly buried in a snowdrift. I proceeded to help her dig it out so she could be on her way.
Later that day I spent two more hours shoveling an 8 ft. wide x 15 ft. long x 2 ft. deep parking space in the street in front of my house (still inadequately plowed) so one of my daughters (who’d been away during the days of the storm but had thoughtfully returned just in time to give me more shoveling to do) had a place to park her car.
Today I spent still more hours a) finally excavating my wife’s up-until-now neglected car so she could at last run some urgent errands which had not been done since Monday, and 2) shoveling out a second 8 ft. wide x 15 ft. long x 2 ft. deep parking space in the street in front of my house so my minivan would not be blocking my wife’s car in the driveway.
These many hours of shoveling made necessary by this unprecedented snowstorm have not only taken their toll on my mediocre muscles, but as well on my always overloaded schedule, leaving me virtually no time to continue my research preparations for my rosary talks. Tonight’s broadcast is therefore sadly postponed.
Just when I was missing shoveling, the weather forecast now happily calls for another 12 hours of snowfall tomorrow. Figuring on a fun weekend featuring another two full days of shoveling, I realistically see no chance of resuming my Facebook broadcasts until Monday, when we’ll have our regularly scheduled (8:30 pm Eastern) session discussing the previous week’s readings from Dom Guéranger’s “The Liturgical Year.”
The series on “The Biblical Foundations of the Rosary” will therefore resume next Wednesday, March 22.