If you’re like me, you’ve finally dug out from the storm on the east coast. It was a big one for our area–over a foot fell by the time it was done and that’s a lot for the south! My attitude on snow is one of “meh” due to the fact that I grew up standing in a snow bank in upstate New York. A foot of snow is more like an inconvenience to me, but I do understand how it can shut a town down. This town is great, but lacks the infrastructure, equipment, and man power to take care of this kind of precipitation. I get it. Trust me. The grocery store was bare two days before and my hat goes off to the hard working employees there, in public works, and folks like farmers who still had to work no matter the outside conditions.
Having plenty of warning and time to prepare, the university shut down on Friday, the public transit shut down for two days, announcing it 24 hours in advance, and most local schools, businesses, and organizations also announced their closure. It was the perfect opportunity to also do the same. Shut down, reboot, and enjoy the solitude.
The power stayed on so all first world conveniences were at hand: a warm house, plenty to eat, a steady stream of internet and netflix, and time to not even feel obligated to leave the house. The solitude was almost deafening. Not a single person outside, not a single vehicle moving by, no noise. Only white noise from the snow.
The weather offered great pause for everyone I know to laze about without consequence or any feelings of guilt. Many of my friends and colleagues took work home but there’s something about that psychological freedom, that pure joy of having no where to be, no where to go, and knowing you can stand (or sit) still for a while. The greatest luxury of our pack of academics is to unplug and reboot. With the attachment we have to devices, work, and the lack of any kind of balance, a two day sno-cation was just what we all needed.
I baked, I cooked, I bought fancy charcuterie (also known as amazing salami) and ate it with some amazing NY cheddar I brought back with me, and didn’t shower for several days. Guilt free. I love snow so when it began to come down, I took the opportunity to trudge and shuffle up empty streets for about three miles each day and check out the world around me. It was wonderfully silent and still.
As I draft this, I’m back at my favorite coffee shop getting ready for another week but the two day break was delightful. Instead of worrying about what I had no control over, I took full advantage of the break. Town is back to the bustling place I know, more folks have dug themselves out and are pouring into the building, and I hope each of you were able to enjoy the snow as much as I did. It will be gone in a week, the weather forecast is very mild. Cheers to the next snow storm!