Saturday, January 13, 2018

Winter Weather in the Lowcountry..

We watched on tv as the icy, snow-laden weather streamed down from Canada.

It happens every year and we were somewhat smug that it usually doesn't come this far south.

I mean, we are described as "sub-tropic" and we have palm trees.

My yard has almost a dozen of them.

How South can you get?! Miami-like.

Oh, I heeded the drastic warnings and dire forecasts.

Oh boy, did I!

I realized my plants needed to be tended to.

Last year I had purchased a simple, $50 clear, plastic hothouse online from Amazon, just in case I ever needed to protect my smaller deck plants.

A l00-watt incandescent light bulb could be plugged in if additional heat protection was needed.
There was a brief - but heavy - snowfall in February 2014.

That reminded me that in 2010, Wallaby was my cat when we had some snow. He was an outside cat and he itched to go check this.

Wallaby galloped bravely down the snow-covered front steps and quickly realized this was NOT the "outside" he remembered.

He was out only a few minutes and raced back up the stairs, giving me a look that he did not appreciate whatever joke I was trying to pull! I think he also wanted longer legs.

With that quickly melting snowfall, things improved overnight, the palm trees popped back up as the snow melted and the silly Wallaby cat was ready - and eager - to be outside again.

The weathermen mentioned that previous brief snow - and the one in Hugo Year 1989 -  but warned this was a Snowmagedden Storm and we needed to make sure faucets were dripping and cross our fingers that the power (and heat!) did not go out when ice burdened limbs and power lines snapped.

This storm started late Tuesday with rain.

Lots of it, freezing as it hit the ground. I draped a sheet over the exposed plants and switched on the warming light bulb.

Wednesday I mainly looked out at the blanket of snow, snug inside and marveling at the amount that had fallen.

The excited weather people pegged it at just under 6-inches and Carolina drivers were hearing about the threat of "black ice."

That shocker extended all the way down to Tallahassee, Florida so this "climate change" was for real.

I had overlooked some items left outside on the deck and saw now I had a pair of "snowshoes."

During the day, some snow melted in the sunshine but quickly re-froze at night, creating treacherous slippery patches.

This was NOT going to be a brief, chilly inconvenience.

Projected temps for the next few days were going to be below freezing.

Even to a low of 16 degrees!

My slowly dripping faucet was still keeping my pipes from freezing.

Hardy younger neighbors had never hesitated to go and romp in the snow while it was still falling.

Note the socks used as gloves!

I could hear a few cars crunching their way past my house that reminded me of the year I had lived up in Minnesota.

Hmmm, were there oleanders that far north?

After venturing out into my yard on Thursday, I listened closely to traffic conditions and decided on Friday to attend a quarterly luncheon of the Post and Courier Retirees Gang.

I called and learned the restaurant had been closed since the storm struck but had re-opened Friday morning.

A slow and careful drive to Liberty Tap Room in Mt Pleasant was uneventful. Whew.

Stepped inside and saw the Liberty staff had arranged our meeting space to accommodate the 15-20  guys who usually attended.

I saw one other retiree and, soon, two more joined us.

Instead of messing up the neat setup, we sat at a table of four and listened to staffers tell us their snow and ice stories and we shared ours.

My situation at home was fairly close to the others. We all were concerned and were careful driving.

But a few close calls were cited as other drivers drove as if there was no ice and we all agreed, right now slipping and sliding, was a fact of life.

Because I did not lose power, my home was toasty comfortable, and my cat just took it for granted.

She had no interruption of her Kibble, things looked the same for her and her cat naps were the usual 16-hours a day.

(Click on the photos and links for more details.)

A change in the weather did not really alter what I was doing.

I did scrape the snow and ice off my deck and shook the snow off the sheet I had placed on the larger plants.

Then, I unzipped the small clear plastic greenhouse.

I turned off the bulb that had kept it warm inside.
and was rewarded with the sight of a fresh blooming flower.

That was $50 well spent for the plants.

Below are some other random snow photos, including one when my station wagon almost disappeared during the one year I lived in Minnesota.

While living in Minnetonka, I was offered a job in the Florida Division of Tourism.

They asked if I wanted to come down and check it out.

I laughed and said I accept the job sight-unseen. No hesitation.

The job was in Florida and I had just spent a year where Winter was invented!

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