I’m guilty. This past week when I heard we were going to get some freezing precipitation, I got a bit excited. Then, I heard it was likely going to be in the form of snow and I got VERY excited. We average only about 1/2 inch of snowfall per year here in Columbia, South Carolina. The upstate gets a bit more and the low country/coastal areas get less. But, when we get enough snow where it actually sticks and we can throw snowballs, it’s not “rare” but it is not typical either. It is more of an event than anything else around here. The weather stations start breaking in with hourly forecasts. The TVs and Radios are abuzz with school and Government offices closings. Schools in some cases run on 2 hour delays and all of this in anticipation of a snowflake flying without even seeing one. It’s really quite interesting.
It’s also interesting how our Northern friends react to our snowfalls down here. I have told a lot of our friends that I don’t want to move up North. In fact, I’m about as far North and as far West as I want to live. I have told them, you don’t have to shovel sunshine. Well, last week, as I said, we did get a bit of snow. It was supposed to start snowing around noon on Tuesday, January 28. However, it didn’t actually start until later in the evening on Wednesday. Because of the forecast, the schools were closed. Then, a lot of the parents said, “See, I told you we could have had school.” But, if they had opened and the snow had started as forecast, we could have ended up like Atlanta. They were going to close schools early but with all of the traffic on the Interstates from people leaving work early and going home, the roadways literally became parking lots as overpasses and roads began to accumulate ice. We don’t have ice moving equipment down here. We have salt trucks and some plows that fit on the front of trucks, but we only use them once or twice a year. It’s just not something we do.
Anyway, we awoke Wednesday morning to about 2-1/2 to 3 inches of white fluffy powder on the ground. Of course, we made snow angels and went and found a hill near our house and used the top of a turtle sandbox lid to slide down the hill. I’m just excited that at 48 and 50 years old, we are still young at heart and in good enough shape, thanks to Beachbody Products, to play with our kids like that. We posted pictures on Facebook and then, we heard from our Northern Friends saying things like “That’s not snow, that’s a dusting. If you want to see snow, come up here” and other such things. Well, like I said, it’s not something we get every year here.
When I was 7 years old in 1973, we got 16 inches at one time. It is the largest recorded snowfall here. I remember playing in it and building snowmen and thinking it was as normal as it could be. But, it was so much snow they literally brought in the Army National Guard to help and I remember seeing the helicopters flying around assisting people. But, being 7 years old, it was normal to me. Odd isn’t it to think now that it was a once in a lifetime event and I will likely never see that much snowfall here again in my life. It’s kind of sad when you think about it.
Southern Snow – What you have to do….
At the first mention of potential snow, the first thing you have to do is go the grocery store and buy a loaf of bread or two and a gallon of milk or two. Nobody I’ve talked to knows why, but it’s just something that you have to do. You also have to make sure you’re stocked up on vanilla extract and sugar for “snowcreme”.
You have to fill the bathtub with water in case you lose power. (This was very important when you depended on well water with an electric pump, but why people still do this when they are on commercial water is beyond me.) When Hugo hit, we flushed commodes with water from our neighbor’s pool. TMI?
The next thing you have to do is put bowls out on the car, on the deck, on the trampoline, wherever, to catch snow so you can make “snowcreme” with the snow you collect using the vanilla extract and sugar. It’s not as good as Shakeology, but it’s pretty stinkin’ good and we only get to have it about every other year. I think our last decent snowfall was 2011. So, we enjoy it when we get the chance.
Then, after you are all prepared, you look out the window every 5 minutes to see if it’s snowing yet and then sigh and sulk when it isn’t.
Southern Snowfall – Enjoy it while it lasts
When it snowed last week, a friend of mine hit me on Facebook and said, “So much for shoveling sunshine, eh?” I said, I ain’t shovelin’ NOTHIN’. All I have to do is wait until tomorrow and the sun will take care of it for me. Well, it stayed cold and we actually had snow in shady spots for 3 or 4 days, but in the trafficked areas, it was gone the next day. It did just what we wanted it to do. It snowed and made things pretty for a day or two, and then it was gone and we have the memories and the pictures. So, yes, it was fun and exciting, but now it’s gone. If it happened every other day, it wouldn’t be as good. It’s kind of like eating clean. When you do have a day where you indulge, it’s better because you don’t eat that stuff every day.
But…is it over? They are actually forecasting freezing rain, sleet, snow next Tuesday and Wednesday here so, I’m going to go buy some bread and milk Monday. We have plenty of sugar and vanilla extract and I’m not worried about our water situation. Chances are it will be just a cold rain, but, you never know. Stranger things have happened!!
Yes, I love the snow. In fact, we’re going skiing next week. That’s the beauty of living here. We get snow now and again and if we want to see more, we can drive about 3 hours and go have fun!!
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