This is an older post about ice and snow, which is something that I need for my Caipirinha right now while sitting here in 32C/90F on my deck.
I’m surrounded by all kinds of wildlife and watching some feeble attempts by the family to grow various berries and vegetables. It’s a spring/summer project, but we always forget to move the seedlings into the kitchen garden … probably because we always forget or neglect to clear out the kitchen garden for weeds.
The sun and heat stroke makes my mind wander back to last winter when we received about a foot of snow in less than 6 hours. If you are a true snow piercer or live in Alaska, you might laugh at these measurements and enjoy larger quantities of snow. To you, a foot of snow is perhaps laughable. Nevertheless, for us people in the North East US, it is still considered a good snow dropping.
What made this snowstorm more “interesting” was the sudden onset of icy rain an hour before the real snowfall hit. This left a solid half an inch of ice well hidden under the foot of fluffy white snow, invisible by the spectator and novice snow blowing dude aka me.
The salter attached to the back helps put down a nice layer of salt that eats the ice away, and the off-road tires has a sold grip on any surface.
With my new monster side-by-side multi-purpose utility vehicle (aka the blue monster), I can clear the driveway of snow in about 30-35 minutes. Obviously, those times are only for a snowstorm that delivers anything up to a foot of snow. Anything more will take a little longer.
I’m out during and after snowstorms, clearing the snow all the way down to the black-top, while sitting in my pajamas and listening to my favorite music from the massive Bluetooth speaker, lighting up the surroundings with the very bright LED bars.
The only catch is, the blue monster cannot pass in front of the house, as we have a large boulder blocking and narrowing the pathway. A boulder was casually thrown by some rock giant back in the ice age. It does not move easily, so I have to use shovels or a smaller snowblower.
My snowblower is a trusted companion and has served us very well. It has a wide plow, big engine, and cool caterpillar tracks. It can move a lot of snow, if you take it slow and let it chew it up.
After having cleared the main driveway, and made my way to the path. It has a slight incline, but not anything where you need climbing gear, and is only 30 feet long.
I started the red monster (snowblower) and slowly chewed up and spit out the snow on our path. It went fairly smoothly for the first 5-6 minutes. I was etching my way to towards the porch stairs at a good pace, but could also feel that the pathway was slippery.
My caterpillar boots were letting me know that mother nature had some evil intentions with this black ice – assuming we can still call it black ice! Perhaps just nasty thick treacherous ice.
Suddenly I hit a more troublesome spot of ice and decided to use my legs to push harder, allowing the snowblower to get really underneath the snow layers.
The next thing that happens was as if I was caught in pranked TV, Americas Funniest Video, or a sinister snow demon cursing me.
I like to think I was smacked down by an invisible Chuck Norris. He had positioned himself a few inches behind, taking aim at my upper back area, and planted a well-placed circle kick between my shoulder blades.
I did a few slippery dance moves and hit the icy pathway chest first. Not even making an effort to soften the blow with my arms. The air was knocked out of me. I couldn’t even let out a yelp or cry in pain, as there was no air left in my lungs – or so it felt.
I couldn’t call out to my family for help either, as the storm was roaring and snowblower still running. My voice was muffled by these sounds.
- Would I die alone on my pathway?
- Was this really the end?
- How old is Chuck Norris
- How much air is actually in the lungs?
- Is it even possible to just lie here for a while without getting frostbite?
- When will my snowblower run out of petrol?
- Why didn’t I hear Chuck?
I cursed myself for filling it up with petrol before starting clearing snow, knowing that it could easily run for an hour or two. It would only hide my screams for help!
I slowed rolled onto my back, still alive, and looked straight into the clouds. I swear I could hear evil laughter hidden in the snowflakes, and see a smile forming on mother nature’s beautiful winter face.
15 minutes went by. Chuck Norris had left me as quickly s he hit me, and I was starting to feel better, catching my breath and enjoying the AC/DC song, This Means War, in the background cutting through the snow from my blue monster.
As I tried to get up, it was very obvious that I had either cracked or severely bruised my ribs. Every turn or pull sent shivers of pain through that area, and made my attempts to get up even more difficult.
I felt like a very old man trying to get up from a sunbed and in taht instance dreaded getting much older.
I finally managed to get up and moved to my blue monster, sat down and recovered a little while longer. I turned off all the vehicles. They had worked hard enough too.
I slowly moved through the garage, managed to get off the snow gear and moved inside to the warm living room and slumped into my La-Z-Boy chair, shouting to my family that they had to clear the rest of the snow.
So, be mindful of mother nature’s intentions. Look out for this nasty invisible ice, and more importantly, always be prepared for Chuck Norris!
Getting older suck and healing from any injury takes a lot longer. You can just pee on it like Bear Grylls, walk it off or let out a Viking roar to fend off the pain. These bruises suddenly take days or weeks to heal and makes you curse DIY and house chores.
Thankfully winter is still a few months away, and I have healed fully. I’m ready for the return of Chuck Norris and the Ice Queen.