Saturday, December 22, 2012

Snow Adventures 2012

In 2009, we had a snow storm in Wisconsin that canceled classes. I reported about the snow adventures  I had that day.  In 2010, there was another big snow storm, but I must not have had anything to share about it.  The winter of 2011 was very mild.  Whatever snow fell would melt in a few days.

Now its 2012 and we had a really big snow storm (and apparently we are naming winter storms now and this one was called Draco).  The storm hit on Thursday during the middle of finals week.  The university canceled finals that day, but announced that finals were on for Friday.  I think the university got ahead of itself here because they made this announcement before the Madison bus system announced that it was not operating on Friday.  The university provost sent an email to the entire university both confirming that finals were still on and suggesting that students that normally require bus transportation to campus could call one of the four cab companies in town.

Shannon had Thursday off as well but went back to work on Friday.  I followed her outside 8:00 to make sure she could get our Prius out of our underground garage and onto the city streets safely.  She made it out of the garage ok (the key is not to chicken out by slowing down) but had to wait in the parking lot behind someone who got stuck.  I helped this person get unstuck.  It was only the first.

Behind Shannon was another person that got stuck coming out of the underground garage of the neighboring apartment building.  After this person, someone else got stuck in the same place as the first.  At this point, it was 8:30 and I went inside to rest and warm up.  Then at 8:45, I went back out to see if there was anyone else I could help.  I walked around our apartment complex several times and helped seven people in total that day.

In the middle of one parking lot was a car that had apparently been left there over night.  The picture below shows this car after we dug much of it out (someone that I had just helped get unstuck decided to help me).

On the inside of the left rear window was a note with the owners name, address, and phone number.  (I thought I had a closeup of the window and the message, but alas.)  That is a really good idea!  He didn't answer my call, but this other guy with me lived in his building and must have notified him because his car was gone during my next trip around our complex.

On Wednesday night, I had parked our Oldsmobile facing our garage door so that I could easily bring the car inside to warm up and have the snow melt off.

The reason that so many cars were stuck in our parking lots is that the people responsible for removing the snow got very far behind.  One of our maintenance workers that was also out and about said they were either getting suck themselves or their equipment was breaking.  I didn't bother removing the snow in front of our Oldsmobile in the hopes that they would clear out the rest of the snow that night.

No dice.  It only took about 20 minutes to dig it out.  Here is my car in our garage:

As you can see, I only cleared off the bare minimum of snow to get my car into the garage.  Furthermore, I only dug an Oldsmobile-size hole out of the drift in front of the car.

Here's to not having to do this again for another year.