It’s Not All Mary Poppins

Think hot, think tropical, think ANYTHINGBUTMOREOFTHIS!

We had a Major Winter Storm last night. Possibly our seventh of the season. The city ran through its snow removal budget before Christmas. Lord only knows how we’re paying for this…

It just keeps coming down. Inches upon centimetres upon ice upon sleet upon snow. The snow fell steadily all yesterday afternoon. The sleet fell last night. The freezing rain around dawn, followed by snow for the bulk of the day. The sun has come out now, late afternoon, as have all my neighbours, armed with shovels.

Cars sit in the street. Nowhere for them to go until the driver clears the driveway. There is no street to speak of, only two parallel tire-ruts, six inches deep in the snow. Snow which is levelled flat by the underbelly of the passing cars between the ruts, and mounded even higher to each side.

I rather like this stage of the storm, when the neighbours all come out armed with shovels and do battle with the mounds. There is much camaraderie. People holler encouragement. Neighbours band together to shove a car into a drive. A man crosses the road with a bucket of sand; another helps a neighbour put chains on his tires (illegal on highways, but all right for getting into your drive). Laughter rolls, tangible as exhaled breath in the icy air. The snow, the sheer depth of the stuff, muffles sound. It’s a calmer, quieter, kind, more congenial city which digs its way out.

But still. Enough with the snow already! (“It’s MARCH!” we say to each other, as if THAT means anything in Ottawa. We all know better, yet somehow, it seems an injustice, an impropriety, to be suffering so in March.)

With this the view out your front door — that mound is four feet high and obscures two-thirds of the sidewalk — you can see why Sheri’s “Let’s Pretend It’s NOT Winter” meme is so very appealing. Which is why I’m doing it, Right Now.

1. If you could go anywhere in the world RIGHT NOW, where would you go?

Tahiti. Tahiti has always been my fantasy escape destination. Who knows if the reality would live up to the dream? (Who cares, given how slight is the possibility I will ever get there?) Tahiti. I’d rather be in Tahiti.

2. What’s your favourite tropical drink?

A crushed-ice lime margarita. Slushies for grownups.

3. What’s your favourite (non-winter) activity?

Walking. I do that all year round, obviously, but I enjoy it in the summer. In summer, it’s recreation; in winter, merely transportation.

4. What’s your favourite article of summer clothing?

My red wrap-around dress.

5. What’s your favourite food cooked on the BBQ?

Grilled vegetables, especially red pepper, eggplant, and garlic. Yummmm…

6. You’re on the beach…what do you have on your feet?

NOTHING. I want the heat, I want the sand between my toes.

7. Canoe, motor boat or white water raft? (Or write your own)


8. Do you prefer to swim in a pool, a lake or the ocean?

Ocean. With a sandy, not rocky or seaweedy, bottom.

9. Favourite flavour of ice cream?

I’m not huge on ice cream. Probably President’s Choice Fudge Crackle.

10. What do you look forward to most about summer in general?

Not having cold feet. Long walks. Evenings relaxing on the porch. Early morning reading on the porch.

UPDATE: Forecast for the weekend: 20 – 30 more cm, with a possibility, if the storm settles rather than passing through, of 40 – 50.

Tahiti. Someone take me to Tahiti. NOW.

March 6, 2008 - Posted by | Canada, memes and quizzes, Ottawa | , , ,


  1. Tahiti does indeed sound very inviting. I hadn’t heard the forecast for the the weekend yet, I wonder if hibernation is an option?

    I can’t sleep that much, but I plan some serious coccooning.

    Comment by Sheri | March 6, 2008 | Reply

  2. You know, I was just complaining about the weather myself!

    I’m trying to do the list dealie every day for March, too, so I’m totally going to borrow your meme because it would be SO nice to think of warm, summery things!

    Isn’t it great? I think I’ll close my eyes, do some relaxation breathing, and go to my Happy Place — which, this time, will be a sandy, sunny beach, dotted with palm trees. The hiss and roar of the waves. Yes.

    Comment by Ms. Huis Herself | March 6, 2008 | Reply

  3. Wow. I just got a newfound appreciation for the current state of March California weather I’m experiencing. One question from a snow-naive reader though – why are chains illegal on the highway? When our (mountain) highways get snowed on, chains are required.

    The difference is the topography. We have no mountains. Decent snow tires (NOT all-season radials!) do the job without the wear and tear to the roads caused by chains.

    Comment by Tali | March 6, 2008 | Reply

  4. Oh, darn. Tali stole my comment. 🙂 Greetings from California! And thank you for reminding me of why I don’t think I could live “up north” again.

    My son called me a few weeks ago during a winter storm in Washington DC, after having taken over two hours to get home from Baltimore, and said “I just want you to know that I’m walking through ice and sleet right now, and I hate you.” I wouldn’t trade places with him, though.

    Pfft. He has a parent in California, which is to say, free lodging someplace warm and sunny. He has less to complain about than some of us…

    Comment by Florinda | March 6, 2008 | Reply

  5. I did your little meme over at south city.

    And I loved your “visiting neighbours” as one of the things you miss about summer. Wish I’d thought of it when doing the meme — because I sure do miss that easy summertime socializing on the porches!

    Comment by Bridgett | March 6, 2008 | Reply

  6. Oh my god, those answers are pretty much mine, except that I don’t own your red wrap dress. I own other wrap dresses. And that pretty much looks like here, and I hear now we are up for another dump this weekend. Whee. So yes, let’s go to Tahiti, okay? You drive, I’ll buy margaritas. (Since I’m pretty sure I can’t afford a real trip, I’m pretending it can be a road trip, okay? Work with me here!)

    I’ll have to drive your car, being as we don’t have one, but you’re on! When can we leave?

    Comment by kittenpie | March 7, 2008 | Reply

  7. You can visit me. We never get snow. We’ll almost never. Last year some snow stuck for like two minutes and then it melted.

    Wishing you warm breezes and sunshine!

    Comment by mamacita tina | March 12, 2008 | Reply

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