11 December 2010

Holy. Crap.

It is bad out there, y'all. The last time I checked the totals (and how can they even tell, with all the blowing and drifting?), Minneapolis had somewhere approaching 15 inches. One suburb has 20 already.

Minneapolis declared a snow emergency late this morning. My cookie exchange was postponed until tomorrow, so I figured around noon, that I would go out and move my car. That turned into a two-hour ordeal.

Actually getting my car out of my parking spot in front of the house turned out to be the "easy" part. While looking for another parking spot, I got stuck twice. A total of seven different people helped push me out of the various stuck spots.

There were many times I was almost crying, because I was stuck in the middle of the street with no one to help me, and I left my phone in my apartment. Who the fuck would I call anyway? There was also a lot of cursing. But those seven people who helped me out were wonderful. I should have brought some of my extra cookies to hand out to Good Samaritans.

I drove around for who knows how long, looking for somewhere to park my car during the snow emergency -- but avoiding streets that would get me stuck again. I actually gave up pretty quickly. I was soaked -- I'd been in drifts up to mid-thigh. I'd fallen down a couple of times. My hat and mittens were soaked. My hair was soaked and filled with ice chunks. My coat was soaked and icy. Oh, and my feet were frozen.

When I gave up, I went to Calhoun Square and parked. It's $9 for 24 hours (though, the sign says "No Overnight Parking." If you're open 24 hours and can park 24 hours, doesn't that mean there will be cars there overnight?). Quite honestly, I'd pay $50.

In theory, this also gives me a great opportunity to go to the gym tomorrow. Then again, I imagine I'm going be awfully fucking sore tomorrow. Plus, I will have probably a pretty shitty walk to Calhoun Square. I imagine there will be plenty of un-shoveled sidewalks and it's going to be fucking COLD (a high of 4 and windchills approaching -25. Yay!). My street should be plowed by 8:00 tomorrow morning, so I will be able to drive back here and park and that will hopefully be the end of it. Unless I get stuck on one of the side streets near the GTs' place tomorrow for the cookie exchange. I'll be bringing my shovel.

On the walk back to my apartment, I hauled my little shovel with me. I figured I'd need it here and might even run into someone who would need it on the streets. Didn't take long for that to happen. I offered my shovel to a guy whose Honda Civic was stuck. He was happy to have it. Then I pushed him out. I ended up almost flat on my face, but I got that fucker out! I pushed him out after telling him as I handed him the shovel, "I'd offer to do more, but I'm exhausted." Apparently not so exhausted I couldn't finish the fucking job.

After helping Honda Civic guy out, I followed a bunch of other people walking down the ruts in the snow in the streets. Very few people were walking on sidewalks. The group with the sled full of groceries and booze invited me to come make cookies and drink with them, but I was wet, hadn't showered and at this point possibly had snot running down my face. I was a MESS.

There were several other people I offered to help along the walk home, but they all mercifully declined. I was freezing and tired. When I walked in the door, I stripped off my wet clothes, wrapped my hair in a towel and had two lovely beers in my t-shirt and undies. Classy!

You know, as awful as those moments were when I was near tears, the walk home was fun and uplifting. I got to pass on the help I got from my neighbors to others, for one thing. The camaraderie of all the people out and about is really great to see. Everyone seems so friendly -- like the people who invited me to make cookies with them. We're all in it together, you know.

It was crazy out there. I couldn't see the stoplights a half block away when I was trying to get my car out. Then when I was driving, there were times I couldn't see shit. I've never experienced borderline white-out conditions IN THE CITY. The airport is mostly closed. Metro Transit actually shut down bus service. I don't think I've ever heard of that happening in all the years I've lived here. But on the radar, it looks to be ending soon. Hallelujah.

Now, I'm just debating whether to brave the outdoors one more time to get a pizza at Luce before the Wolves game starts. I don't think I'm going to do that, though. I've got booze and plenty of food in here. Plus, my boots are still wet.

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