Wow, this has been a winter to remember and for some still going. This is the type of winter that can make people give up and move south, even some of those who moved here to get out of the heat of the south. Its been brutal and the south has already experienced the tragic Lion of spring.
But I see hope in the sky of the harshness of winter being gone. Yes, its still winter and in the 30s but when you experienced average temperatures in single or negative digits, that is a heat wave.
So now that it is beginning to thaw, the dangers of melt occur. Living on the upper Mississippi River, it catches the melt and swells the river well out of it’s bank causing flood damage and further north of us around other rivers and tributaries that flow into the Mississippi, it is still snowing, creating more to melt. I think for us, it is done but are already under a flood watch. We may see the flurrying or even the less than an incher come though but the heavy stuff I think is done. I think last total I saw was just over 56″ for the season which was only 1/2 inch short of an all time record for this area. It started snowing mid January and didn’t quit until last week, with temps dropping often into the negatives, the worst being -34 and that day we had wind chill of -51. I always thought it odd how dirty snow gets as it is melting, some is totally black.
As we ready ourselves to move into another season, and I know some of you are looking for relief from the heat, let us remember that there is usually always a silver lining somewhere. Sometime you just have to look harder for it. Or maybe you are that silver lining that someone desperately needs. Remember to be the spark of sanity in an major chaotic situation and be kind.
I don’t know about any of you but I am DONE with winter this year. I haven’t felt much like writing, am tired of being cold and am so tired of snow and ice EVERYWHERE. Yesterday, the 4th of March was the coldest March 4th on record for this area…ever.Ugh! And it has really taken a toll on our roads. Coming from the south where you don’t have these -34 degree days, it is so much easier to maintain the roads. Of course when it does snow there, everyone looks at each other and says “What do we do now? Oh yea, empty the stores of bread and milk.” But they do them same if a hurricane is coming. Guess its the go to norm.
A lot of the roads here are concrete, which in these bitter temps get brittle, then we throw salt on them that eats the concrete as well as your car, then we run a snow plow on them scrapping up anything that dare be loose. And don’t get me started on the parking lots.
The older roads are cobblestone which in my book is a fancy word for brick. The road in front of my house is cobblestone. One of the oldest roads in town and one of the few not paved over. There is not a single pot hole. You have a few ‘waves’ but if you don’t drive like a typical teenager, they are fine. But saying that, it does amaze me how fast even adults drive on this road. 1 – its a neighborhood, 2- its cobblestone. I can hear you coming 2 blocks away with your tires running across those bricks.
I also find it interesting that to pave over the brick they use asphalt. Don’t know if that is an economical option or the only option for cobblestone. But as the asphalt break up, the cobblestone shows through in seeming good condition. So it make me wonder and ramble on through my frozen winter thoughts.
Today it warmed up to 18 degrees but a wind of 24 mph gives you feel a very cold wind chill. The formula for figuring wind chill is a little beyond my desire to really know what it is. Take my word for it, its cold. But I wanted out so out I went. I stopped at the bridge park and it is still a sheet of ice but the geese were there nibbling at what little grass they could find. Then a beautiful bald eagle flew by and settled in one of the oak trees near the water’s edge of the park. I wanted to get closer to get a better picture but it was too icy.
When it gets warm I will get some good shots of the eagles as they live all along the rivers in this area. Meantime, enjoy the geese. They were so interesting to watch as they would be up on only one leg while keeping the other leg warm then switch legs or just sit down to keep the wind off their kegs.
According to the current forecast, this past Monday should be the last negative temperature day for the season. Tomorrow it is supposed to be in the mid 20s. That will feel like a heat wave compared to what the last 7 weeks have been like. And hopefully by the weekend, the polar vortex will have moved on and give us more seasonal temps.
So as we dream of warmer days that may be coming within a couple weeks, let’s remember to share our warm thoughts with others and to be kind.
OK, it is February 16, 2019 at 8:15 in the evening, Central Time USA. Two days ago we had a fluke system that came in and gave us glorious day temps of 45 degrees. It was fabulous. Tonight, however, we are at 24 degrees and waiting for yet another winter mess to hit us. Saturday night thru Sunday at noon, a possible 3 – 5 inches more snow and then on Tuesday night thru Wednesday at noon ANOTHER 3 – 5 inches. At this point we are laughing and cheering “Come On”. We are close to breaking a new all time record of snowfall in one season – only need 12 more inches and we still have 2 more weeks in February plus March has been known for some significant inches. The picture below was the local weather report showing broken records at that time before we got the last storm which was supposed to be 4-8 inches but ended up being 3 inches of ICE.
This will be a year where we will need to have t-shirts saying “I survived winter 2019”. The record low for us was -34 with a wind chill of -51. And the polar vortex was harder in other areas. I am originally from south Georgia – ain’t use to this mess. But what I find funny is how I have acclimated and how people who have lived here all their lives are some of the biggest wimps. So I guess we will see what mother nature throws at us. Its like a “Go Team” now because you want that last record broken to prove you deserve the t-shirt.
The snowfall in November was one event of 14″. Glad I was not working and having to worry about getting to work. The crazy polar vortex was in January is what gave us the all time record cold and the thunder ice. I had never heard of thunder ice until moving here. Weird. And then the blizzard conditions were in one of the February storms, and remember its only the 16th of February.
I have always heard about March coming in like a lion and going out like a lamb, and Lord helps us if this fable follows suit of this winter. Well I will check in with you tomorrow with pictures of what we get. May you all have sweet dreams of warm suntanning days. And as always, remember to be kind to man and beast alike. Especially if you are enduring crazy weather patterns that can cause extra stress on living creatures, cold or hot.
We huddle close to fight the fierce and raging wind
Hoping to not face it as we round the next bend.
As we reach the building edge and peek around to see
We gets blasted in the face as the wind howls “look at me”.
Winter’s demanding blast this year, a force to reckon with
As snow joins low temps to break some record making myths.
But misery moves aside to reflect the beauty God can make
As we look around at mounds of white and tree crystals we pray don’t break.
We’d rather have warm temperatures with flowers all around
But will accept this fate for now until comforting times are found.
When I got to the church this morning the trees were really beautiful but the parking lot was still to icy for much walking about for pictures. But as I was leaving this afternoon, the ice was still hanging in the trees and looked like crystal chandeliers so I was able to get a few pictures. Hope you enjoy them and are safe and warm.
I also remind you of indisputable power of kindness. When we are all under stress due to this oppressive cold, remember the spark of kindness could warm a hurtful soul.
Prayerfully waiting for the 60+ degree warm-up on Saturday of 40+ degree highs with one sentence but many pictures. Thanks to John for the picture I am copying as it helps give the visual of…GOOD GRIEF!
And this is my local area. Live within 15 minutes of the Quad City Intl Airport @ -52