Solstice Blessings

I live in the Pacific Northwest.  Seattle to be exact.  Seattle is a city of hills.  All hills.  There are extremely few level straight of ways.  Maybe a block before it starts to slope, even if only gradually.  But many streets, those going east/west are seriously steep.  I tell you this to explain that when it snows and then freezes here, it is hell.  A couple inches can paralyze things easily.  The freeways tend to clear up due to the brave but this week is different.

We have 9.5 inches of snow here in north Seattle.  Extremely rare.  4 inches down is 1/2 inch of ice from the freezing rain Sunday night, then more snow.  All of it dry snow.  We usually get wet slop that melts quickly and rarely lasts over a night into the next day.

You know it’s “bad” when they close the local University.  All other schools are closed but they never close the University.  But they did today. Which means that those who couldn’t get in will actually get paid anyway.  Which is why they never close it unless there really is no choice.  The bus system, Metro, has shut down half of their routes.  The airport is open but many flights have been cancelled, they are urging folks to make sure their flight is flying before leaving home.  There are thousands sleeping there.

Some people’s roofs are collapsing, it’s been cold, very cold. Thousands are without electricity.

Today, no snow but it isn’t going to warm up much either but it might for a couple hours.  Just enough for it to be liquid before it dips down again and freezes and starts snowing.  So no thaw of much use before it starts snowing again tomorrow.  Then Wednesday it might warm up and start melting but there will be a foot of snow and ice to melt so we’ll see.  And then Christmas day more snow.  Friday again warming and changing to rain and then rain all weekend.  My Dad’s birthday is Christmas Eve and we don’t know if we’re going to be able to get together or not.

The retail situation has to be just awful. It’s been really sad already but with most folks not getting out of the house, lots of what little Christmas shopping was happening just isn’t, well, happening.  Times are tough.

Rain and warmer temps sounds really great but there is one more problem.  We are then looking at serious flooding in the low areas and in the agricultural areas to the north and south of Seattle.  Which I know from past experience but which they are not talking about yet.

Sophie has cabin fever in a big way. She is a cat who loves it outdoors and when the weather isn’t too cold or too white, she is outside 80% of the hours that the cat door is open.  She’s been thundering around upstairs, coming down to check in, getting Miss Mitty all worked up (she doesn’t really need much help).   In fact, the other night Miss Mitty was so nasty she clawed me and didn’t speak to me for 24 hours.  All is better now but only after I promised that I wouldn’t tell her to be nice to Sophie again.  That she can work it out, or not, in her own way.  *sigh*  My housemate is disappointed that her cat doesn’t obey her and she “doesn’t kow tow to animals.”  I told her she might do better with a dog.  Heh. As if.

So that’s the news, some bad, some not so bad.  Now for the happier…

I got out for a walk the other day, before we got really snowed in.  It was lovely with the sun out.  Icey and beautiful.  So pictures with the sun and pictures with lots of snow.  Solstice, which was re-scheduled, will happen on Friday and Saturday.

snow1420081

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