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We returned home from England last night in an experience that I'm not eager to repeat anytime soon: We flew home in the middle of a snowstorm! The East Coast has been hit with quite a whallop of a snowstorm, and while we didn't get hit nearly as hard as people did further north, we did end up with a few inches, and it was in full swing when the plane came down.

It was very weird. We were descending through seemingly endless clouds; it was so thick that we could barely see the light on the wing. Then ... the clouds broke and we were over the runway, with the lights from the airport coming up out of the dark. About ten seconds later, we plunked onto the ground. The runway was completely snow-covered, which was rather ... disturbing. I always assumed they cleared the snow before allowing planes to land.

The flight was pretty good, although there was understandably some turbulence. Right in the middle of the tea/coffee service, the plane started jostling up and down enough that my still-very-hot cup of tea started sloshing all over, which was not good.

My inlaws came to pick us up from the airport. We had originally purchased tickets to return on New Year's Day to Baltimore-Washington International, which is the nearest airport to us; a day after we bought our tickets, that flight was cancelled and we were rebooked on a next-day flight to *cue ominous music* Dulles International Airport. Washington, DC, has three local airports. Travel tip from a local: If at all possible, fly into BWI or Reagan. Dulles sucks. It's like it exists in a self-contained pocket of gray existential sadness. It looks like a warehouse, everyone who works there is pissy or miserable or both, and as a result, it is ridiculously inefficient. The nicest people we dealt with were the Border Patrol agents and the British Airways representative. Even the Christmas decorations looked sad as shit.

My sister--who has also had negative experiences at Dulles--told me that you start out in a moving room to get from terminal to terminal. I was like o.O, but she was right: The shuttles are not buses in the usual sense; they are large boxes--yes, as big as a midsized room--and if you thought something that large would be more stabilized and offer a smoother, more comfortable ride, then you would be wrong, because you are at Dulles, and nothing is smooth or comfortable there. After being herded into one of these boxes by an unsmiling and irritable Dulles employee, we were shuttled across the snow-covered tarmac while the driver blared the horn all the while (because, apparently, the people who drive the little luggage trains and such wouldn't otherwise see the giant, rolling box careening towards them) and I clung to a pole inside for dear life. At the baggage claim, when half of the luggage was unloaded, the conveyor belts suddenly stopped and apparently there was no one downstairs to fix them, so the employee who was exuberantly slamming suitcases from laying flat to laying on their sides crawled down the conveyor belt, was missing for a few minutes, and then crawled back up. Of course, no one was told what was happening, so a bunch of us who hadn't received all of our luggage came to the conclusion that it was lost and reported to the BA desk, at which point we were given the comforting news that, no, our luggage made it just fine, it was just that no one could find the people who were supposed to be in the baggage loading area to do things like fix the conveyor belt, so the people who had been hired to slam luggage from one position to another had to do it instead.

When we finally left the airport, it was snowing something fierce. Driving on the Capitol Beltway is harrowing under the best of conditions--a recent study by Allstate insurance found that DC drivers get into accidents at roughly twice the rate of the national average--and was super-fun in heavy snow. By now it was about 10ish--our flight having arrived at 8:15--and my brain was telling me that it was 3 AM. It is about an hour's drive from Dulles to my inlaws' house, but it took quite a bit longer. The roads were in awful shape, even the major highways. It was about midnight by the time we arrived at my inlaws' house, and Bobby and I decided that a middle-of-the-night journey an hour further northward through the dark, unplowed country roads of Carroll County was not a wise course of action, so we spent the night at my inlaws' and drove home early this morning.

Despite not getting into bed until after midnight, we were both wide awake by 6 AM--oh, the wonders of traveling east to west! Getting up early is briefly and blissfully easy! We were both due to go back to work, but by 6 AM, the good news was already posted: Schools were closed for the day! We both very much needed the extra day off. Bobby said tonight that he didn't know how we'd lucked out so well. The best he could think of is that we got on Jesus's good side for visiting so many cathedrals and old churches in England and France.

By the time we drove home to Manchester this morning, the highways were clear but the side roads were touch-and-go. The streets in our neighborhood had been plowed but not salted; in fact, our street still looks pretty crappy and is mostly still snow-covered. We only got about 4 inches/10 cm out of this storm, so I'm not sure why it was so hard to clear when I've seen twice that amount cleared out by early afternoon.

We are expected to have the lowest temperatures we've had since 1994 (which I remember well, since I was in seventh grade and the school where I went made us stand outside for 20 minutes every morning before letting us in, and I remember my bones just aching relentlessly that year). Right now, it is 10F/-12C outside; we have a fire roaring in the woodstove, but my hands are freezing and feel like they've been all day. We're also expected to get more snow in the week to come.

I have pictures and travelogues to post from our excursions around England, and I hope to get those posted this weekend.
For the past two years, every time some sort of winter weather is forecast, either 1) nothing happens or 2) the temperature is just shy of freezing and all we get is dumb rain. This time, they actually got it right--in fact, we got more snow than predicted! When Bobby went out around sunset, he measured 9 inches (27 cm). That's the most we've had in a couple of years.

We went out to Westminster this morning at around 8:30 because we had a couple of things that we needed pre-storm. We had four quick stops and then planned to get breakfast while we were out. When we pulled into Goodwill to drop off a bag of donations, it was snowing lightly. Three minutes later, it was starting to stick to the road. We decided to skip breakfast, and it's a good thing we did, because by the time we were back to Manchester (about a 12-minute drive), the roads were coated in snow, and it was difficult to get up the hill to our street.

The storm is supposed to continue tonight, with sleet and freezing rain; since the winter storm warning is in effect until 10 AM tomorrow, I think it's very likely we won't have school tomorrow. In fact, my cousin (also a teacher in this family of pedagogues!) just posted to Facebook that her district just closed. Bobby's dream is that 1) schools will be closed tomorrow, 2) Liberty will be open, and 3) we will be able to get out by late morning/early afternoon so that he can go snowboarding. He's been up there several times so far, but only for work or for training.

Okay, so I was about to write about the [lack of] salting and plowing in Carroll County today, but who cares about that crap, right? Bobby took an adorable picture of the Goldens early in the snowstorm, when the flakes were light and fluffy and easily stuck to their hair. Now that's the kind of content that matters!

 photo Goldensinthesnowdec13_zps3c01da04.jpg

You can tell we've had a dearth of snow these past two years by the amount of time I've spent talking about it.
Thursday, I will have been teaching for two years, because I started student teaching on the 31st two years ago. Growing up, a year did not pass without a single snow day. The first day with students for my internship was closed for ice; an auspicious beginning? mrrrrp! Not! More like a jinx! Since then, we haven't had a single snow day. I feel I should apologize to fellow Maryland teacherkind for jinxing one of the best perks of the job. We live in a magical place that generally gets snow every year but not enough to invest in what it takes to send kids to school during our couple-few annual snowfalls. Last year, we didn't even get a single snow delay or early dismissal. Boo!

Things are looking up a little on that front. Last Thursday, we had a two-hour delay. Friday, we had a two-hour early dismissal, both due to inclement weather. This morning, another two-hour delay. Baltimore County, the district our schedule usually follows, was closed for students today, as were most local school districts, so there was a rather puzzling "two-hour delay for nonpublic bus service" this morning, which translated to nonpublics (like us) going in two hours late. Had schools been open for students, we probably would have been closed, as it didn't get above freezing here until late morning. The jinx strikes again!

The delay couldn't have come at a better time. I woke up at about 1 AM last night and didn't fall back to sleep till about 4:30 AM, so the few extra hours were very welcome.

It's third quarter, starting today, believe it or not, so the year is halfway over. In my two years of teaching, this is the best I've done in getting my grades done on time. Yay me. I have a few loose ends to tie up and that's it; they're ready to go in. No crunching them on the day they're due at 4 PM with Bobby tapping his toe in the doorway to the teacher resource room! Grades always seem to come due at the same time as multiple other obligations.

Speaking of Bobby, he took and passed his first assessment for National Ski Patrol this weekend. He went on a "ski along" (he's a snowboarder, but the National Ski Patrol tends not to be very PC in their inclusion of boarders, I guess!) on Saturday and took some skills tests and got invited to the next stage. It will be a pretty intense year if he makes the final cut--they're accepting 12 new candidates this year, and he thinks he has a good shot--but it sounds like a hella cool part-time job once all the training's done.

What else? Life for me is 1) teaching, 2) grad school, 3) fannish projects. The usual line-up. I did actually go out the weekend before last in the evening to see my dance teacher's band perform. I had two Guinnesses, hung out with friends not my husband (although he was there too), and almost felt like a normal young person.

Speaking of grad school, if anyone knows (or is!) a practicing Hindu or Confucian who'd be willing to do an email interview with yours truly, please let me know. I have to interview both for my history of religion class, for my final comparative project. Comment here, PM me, or email me at if you can help me out; it would be very, very, very much appreciated.
Yesterday, Bobby and I acted as head cooks for our first SCA feast. To this point, we'd served one feast; we'd never eaten at feast, since they rarely have enough for me to eat to make it worth our while. We were counting on our years of experience as cooks in a very busy family restaurant, plus our masochistic love of cooking complicated, multi-course meals for friends and family, to help us make this one a success.

We've been gradually building toward the feast for the last week. Read more... )
Our First Snowshoeing Adventure )
As of yesterday, late morning, we were dug out of the first snowstorm. First ... yes, we are expecting another to begin at any moment, this time with accumulations of 20-27 inches (50-68 cm) over the next day and a half. It is difficult to estimate our accumulations from the first since the snow came with high winds and there was a lot of drifting. Upon venturing outside (and yes, [ profile] frenchpony, I did eventually go outside because I had to help Bobby shovel out the car ;), the snow came to my knees in some places and almost to my hips in others. I have heard the estimate of 30 inches (76 cm) floated around, and I think that's a fairly reasonable estimate for us too.

Following are pictures we've taken over the past few days, of the snowfall as well as the Goldens. (Because I haven't posted Golden pictures in a while and what else is there to do while cooped in the house but to take cute pictures of your pets?)

Goldens, Snow, and Golden Snow )

Well, Round Two has started. It's been snowing pretty hard outside since right after I started this post. Bobby just came into the study with a big brick of frozen vegetable chowder that he made over the summer and kept just for a moment like this, we just hauled our next load of firewood into the basement--we're ready to go again!
Okay, you have to imagine me actually singing (on-key) in harmony with Bing Crosby for that title to work. :)

We are in the beginnings of what is predicted to be a record-breaking snowstorm for our wee southern state. (Okay, yes, we are just south of the Mason-Dixon line--Bobby and I can nearly spit on it from our front yard--but to all the northerners who like to give us a hard time for panicking about snow, yes, we are still a southern state! We got a total of about 7 inches [18 cm] of snow last winter, even here in Carroll County! That was a low year, but accumulating snowfalls are about a thrice-per-year occurrence for us. I've lost track for this winter already because we've gotten so much.) The last report Bobby read to me predicted 26 to 32 inches (64 to 81 cm) total accumulation for Baltimore, and we generally get more than Baltimore up here in the foothills of Appalachia.

Apparently, the record to this point was 26 inches (64 cm) in February of 2003. I remember that snowfall very well. We were over my parents' house and my dad--who was the only person who couldn't shovel on account of his bypass surgery--didn't bring the snowblower out from the shed because he had developed the superstition that getting out the snowblower meant that we would get no snow, and he was getting irritated by moving it back and forth all of the time. Of course, that left Bobby, my mom, my sister, and me to rotate duties with our two snow shovels, unburying my parents' lengthy driveway from more like three feet of snow. (Official records be damned, it came to my thighs, not my knees!) That was one of the most miserable things I have ever done. I also developed snow blindness for the first and hopefully only time in my life!

This storm is supposed to surpass that one in 2003. Bobby and I are prepared; we stocked up on food yesterday, including stuff that can be cooked on the woodstove if we lose power, and Bobby picked up our dairy and eggs and meat for himself from the farm this afternoon and rolled a wheelbarrow full of firewood to the top of the basement stairs. Schools closed early, so we went out for a late lunch at O'Lordan's for one last taste of freedom. (I did not intend that bad pun--ouch!) It was just beginning to stick on the roads when we were coming home.

Well, I could use to be cooped up for a few days to get some work done. I'm currently in that wild-eyed omg-first-week-of-school-must-get-three-weeks-ahead!!! state of mind, in addition to trying to tie up the last straggling ends of preparing for Back to Middle-earth Month next month. Bobby is thrilled by the storm. He told me this afternoon that it is a dream come true for a weather nerd, and he is a weather nerd. He follows weather blogs ... I did not even know that there were weather blogs! And he has been getting National Weather Service notices on his iPod Touch. He is in the proverbial high cotton.

O What a Night

Dec. 6th, 2008 10:15 pm
dawn_felagund: Skeleton embracing young girl (Default)
Today, I spent a few hours at the library because we switched Internet providers this weekend and so were without Internet for a few hours. However, I had schoolwork to turn in and stuff to do on the SWG site, so I went and used Carroll County's wi-fi that my tax dollars pay for. When I emerged from the library some three hours later, it was snowing and the cars and pavements were lightly covered.

It was one of those strange snowfalls where it is snowing and sunny at the same time, so the snow on the main roads was melting pretty quickly, so it was a simple matter of using a little extra caution in case there were slick patches but, otherwise, an uneventful drive home. When I got home, Bobby was still tinkering with the Internet, so I did some reading in the living room. It kept snowing ... and snowing. When Bobby got the Internet running, the first thing he did was check the forecast. "Less than an inch," it said. (2.5 cm for you sensible, metric-using folks.) We had plans to drive to Hunt Valley (about a half-hour away) to get dinner at Cheeburger Cheeburger and go to a specialty grocery store to stock up on organic/vegetarian food, and since the forecast was unimpressive and my experiences driving home from the library had underscored the fact that the snowfall was really uneventful, then we set out around 6:30.

As soon as we passed out of Manchester township ... )
The Terminally Busy Life of Dawn Felagund )
On Wednesday, it was a beautiful sunny day like summer. It was nearly 90F/32C and I spent the afternoon strolling around in short shorts and a T-shirt, training Alex outside.

Thursday, it was a mere 80F/26C when I went out for lunch around noon, still gorgeous and sunny ... a perfect day.

Thursday, four hours later, I came out from work and the temperature had edged down to 50F/10C and it was cloudy and windy. WTF??

This morning, Friday, I woke up and it was 35F/2C and was raining. It was miserable.

And the moment, there are about 2 inches/5 cm of snow and ice on the ground.

So, in two days, we went from summer weather to ice and snow again. How I ♥ Maryland and its crazy-ass weather!

And next week, it is supposed to be like summer again.

But, in a strange turn of events, we now have reason to be consoled for having to cancel our Bermuda trip. We were supposed to fly from Baltimore to Boston to Bermuda last night. Well, if the trip had gone as scheduled, we would be stranded in Boston right now. The flight we were supposed to take to Bermuda was canceled, so we wouldn't have ended up in Bermuda anyway. I'd much rather have expected to lose the trip than to get my hopes up and end up stranded in a strange airport in the middle of a nor'easter.

On a completely unrelated note, yesterday was Alex's six-month birthday, and I got a funny and somewhat painful reminder that he is no longer the little guy we picked up at nine weeks of age. Every morning, my and Alex's routine is as such: I give him some food (which he never eats) and change his water. I set up his baby gate in the kitchen. The baby gate comes to about my waist. I get some treats and Alex jumps onto the futon so that it is easier for me to pick him up. I lift him up, lean over the baby gate, and plunk him on the other side. Then he gets the treats, and I leave for work.

Well, yesterday, all went as usual, up to the point where I (theoretically) set Alex on the other side of the gate. He's so heavy now and the gate so high that, leaning over to place him on the other side, the weight of the top half of my body + Alex caused me to topple over the gate with him. Luckily, the gate fell over with us, so all I ended up with was a scraped up and slightly bruised knee ... and wounded pride! Bobby and Johnny the Boss, when I told them about it, thought that it was hilarious, however. Alex thought that it was quite exciting that Mommy decided to join him in his room prior to leaving for work.

Speaking of Alex, he just farted, and it smells like rotten melons. Gross. It smells so bad that he got up and moved and left me with the stink. Thanks, Alex.
Today, I was very much reminded that there is, indeed, no such thing as a free lunch. I mean this figuratively, of course. A more literal saying might be, There is no such thing as a free day off from work.

Bobby chose to wait until the sun came up to leave for work, and it was good that he did because my car tires were frozen solid to the parking lot. That was interesting. After a half-hour of trying to break me out, he informed me that I wasn't getting out until the sun came up further and the ice possibly softened to where he could chip it away. He broke two ice scrapers just trying to clear my windshield.

The "snow" isn't even really snow: I can walk on top of it without leaving a track, and--in slightly ickier terms--it takes several seconds of steaming hot dog pee before a dent is made in the surface. I attempted to drive my toe through the ice and to the snow beneath without luck. I dare say that this is worse than the ice storm in 1994 when my friend Lisa and I went ice skating in her pasture; then, at least, I would occasionally hit a spot where my foot would punch through. Also, I weighed much less at age twelve than I do at age twenty-five.

Bobby drove me to work, where I had next to no work waiting for me, which allowed me to catch up on the eternally neglected security threat group database. Still, I should have known that it was coming. I should have known. I hadn't gotten new warrants in a week. Warren picked them up last Thursday. Friday is his day off. Monday, the office that processes our warrants was evacuated because of a "police incident in the neighborhood," so he wasn't able to pick up warrants. Tuesday and Wednesday were snow days.

So an apologetic Warren came in with twenty-nine brand spankin' new warrants for me today.

There is no such thing as a free day off from work.

Meanwhile, this was also Pester Dawn on the Phone Day. Pity I must have missed the memo on that one.

My favorite is when the warrant officers call up and, when I answer the phone, exclaim, "Oh, you're in the office today!?" or even better, "What are you doing in the office today?"'s a Thursday. Last I checked, I generally work on Thursdays.

It kind of annoys me too because I work the most consistently out of anyone in the unit, yet people are always surprised when I'm there. I'm always there. They'll call at noon on a Friday: "You're still there??" Or at four on a Tuesday. "Why are you still there, Dawn?" *headdesk*

This also makes me wonder who they're calling if they think that I'm not there...?

Anyway, because my car was frozen to the parking lot, then Johnny the Boss made arrangements to have Brian pick me up and drive me home from work. Unfortunately, since things weren't going my way today, I got a call around two from a courthouse in PG County; they had one of our sex offenders and needed a prisoner transport.

I tried Lenny; Lenny didn't answer his phone. (Lenny had called me two hours earlier to express surprise that I was in the office.) So that left Brian to do the transport, which meant that I didn't have a ride home from work, since it can sometimes take hours to get in and out of a prison. So I had to change my plans with Bobby to have him pick me up.

Lenny showed up at the office fifteen minutes later. (Though this ended up a good thing because I'd gotten in another sex offender warrant, so he got on that one right away.)

Tomorrow is Friday, thank Eru, and the start of a long weekend besides. I have nine warrants left to run, a detainer to file, and the review list to compile. After that, I'm finishing the annotation on "The Cottage of Lost Play"--which I've only been working on for a month--and writing, and that is it.

Maybe I won't even answer the phone. Since no one thinks I'm in the office anyway.
First of all, Happy Valentine's Day, Flist!

I'm not a huge fan of Valentine's Day as a "romance holiday," despite being married and therefore "entitled" to Valentine's Day benefits. But any day that makes people feel as universally bad as this one does not make me happy. Also, gifts and cards given because Hallmark says, "Thou shalt show thy love on this day!"...and it was? Nah, I much prefer surprises, Bobby buying me a little gift for no reason other than having seen it and thought, "Dawn would like that!" And going out on Valentine's Day...hmph. I don't think so! I do not wait in a vestibule for hours only to receive shoddy service because the servers are stressed and overworked on this day and bad food because the cooks are the same and are probably pre-cooking everything. (I used to be a cook; I know what goes on behind the swinging doors.)

And so I prefer to make Valentine's Day about all sorts of love, not just the romantic kind. So I send my best wishes to my flist.

Also, I would like to offer an LJ gift to the whole flist. I was going to buy a few of these for people that would appreciate the humor, but they cost 99¢ apiece and I--my friends--am cheap. So you get to see it in my LJ whenever you would like rather than on your userinfo page for two weeks.

This is especially dedicated to my lovely sister Sharon, [ profile] ssotknapsack.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Also, if you are on Ye Flist and would like a dose of Dawn Felagund heart-related poetry, then I dedicate this to you as well! With warnings because my poetry is baaaad.

An Eeenteresting Valentine's Day )
I was driving home from work today, and I was about five minutes from home when *whoosh!* it started to snow. I mean, one moment I was driving and it was cloudy but clear; next, I could barely see for all of the snow. Of course, I live in Maryland, and. so. traffic. stopped. It took fifteen minutes to get home, during which time about a centimeter of snow fell on the ground. Not on the roads, mind you, but the Marylander's response is "OMG SNOW!!! *screeeech on brakes*" whether the snow is on the road or not.

I swear, the only time I'm truly embarrassed to be from this state is not when considering that "Natty Boh" is the local beer and not when our baseball team consistently sucks and not when we get to wave the flag for having the highest incidence of chlamydia in the's when it snows and Marylanders routinely make fools out of themselves by entering a blind panic and getting into stupid accidents. I can practically hear the people in Pennsylvania laughing at us...and rightfully.

We had no groceries, so we went to Uno's for supper and then the grocery store. I had a coupon for a free pizza at Uno's, but I forgot it at home, stuck inside my 2006 edition of The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror. That wouldn't be so bad except that this is the second or third time that I've forgotten it. Most women keep important papers in their purses; I keep mine inside the pages of The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror. WTF.

I'm off from work tomorrow. I haven't decided whether or not I will elaborate why at some later date, under f-lock, but I am off tomorrow. Hopefully, that means that I will get some writing done tonight. I haven't written all week despite wanting to. Yet I'm avoiding it. I have no frickin' idea why. Today, I even rewrote the SWG "site etiquette" instead of working on stories. But being off tomorrow might make me more productive in answering comments and emails or less; it depends on what kinds of trouble Bobby and I can get ourselves into on a day off.

I've realized that I have a fear of appearing to be a hypochondriac or one of those people who draws attention to herself with medical complaints. I recall days when my hip would hurt so badly that I couldn't walk upon waking up, yet I would suck it up to walk normally into Johnny's office to update the stats board so that he wouldn't know how badly I was hurting...or getting a half-hour of sleep and being sick as a dog, yet refusing to take off from work or even explain, "Hey, I'm not feeling well today, that's why I'm acting oddly." I once went to work at The Piece with a bad infection and a high fever and nearly passed out in the kitchen, and Bobby ragged me about going home to where he made me cry...and still I refused to go. At least until I was sure that we weren't going to get a dinner rush. And that was the first time I'd missed work in five years.

(For the record, my hip is much better since getting the new mattress. I've been able to walk every day since!)

And this attitude is part of the reason why my hip won't heal. An intelligent person would maybe say to her husband or one of the other big dudes in her scuba class, "Hey, I'm really sore today, can you help me carry my tanks to the car?" She would not carry said tanks herself--two at a time--ripping her partly-healed hip again in the process. So maybe I've got a complex with appearing strong and brave when I'm really not.

Anyhoo, this is a rambly post that really says nothing at all and really just serves as further excuse to procrastinate on writing. *sigh*

ETA! I have finished rewriting the first chapter of the AMC prequel that got partially eaten when my USB key decided to go boom. And it's completely different from the original! Whee!
Because I've spent the day dividing my attention between catching up on beta-work and watching football, I lack the coherence to string together, like, actual paragraphs....

Life in Points )


Feb. 13th, 2006 10:41 am
dawn_felagund: Skeleton embracing young girl (Default)
Well, here I am at work, so Maryland has managed to recover from the snow in a somewhat reasonable fashion. (Although most schools are closed today, since they couldn't get the lots cleared in time.) At the conclusion of the storm, Columbia had twenty-one inches (53 cm), and Columbia is about five miles away from us, so that's a good estimate of what we got in Ellicott City as well.

From Friday night until this morning, I did not have to leave my house. This used to bug me when I still lived with my parents, but now that I live with just Bobby, it's not so bad. I can do what I want, and he mostly leaves me alone when I'm writing. So I got a lot done, including a good half of Friday's AMC chapter, so it looks promising that I might be able to keep my posting schedule.

We had to dig out the cars, but it wasn't too bad for once. The snow was light and powdery; Bobby said that it felt like marshmallow, and he was exactly right. It took no time at all, and I'm not even a bit sore this morning. Of course, when Bobby came home from ice skating with Potter last night, our idiot neighbors had taken his spot. But Bobby--infuriated--went and knocked on their door, and the guy moved the car. It is a constant ordeal with our neighbors, who simply do not seem to grasp that living in an apartment building inhabited solely by professional people (except them) means that you do not act like it is a dorm. There is no need to slam the door, no need to have one's music or TV up so loud that I can hear the dialogue as soon as I walk in the door to the building (and they live on the third to us), and no need to allow one's friends to party in the parking lot at three in the morning.

My boss was in Atlantic City for the weekend and apparently got stranded up there in the storm...not like I think he's complaining!

Oh, and for my own amusement, I am going to keep track of how many days my coworker Kathy is unable to work due to sickness or injury. I am prone to collecting such random data; once I figured the percentage of mornings that I got stuck behind a slow-moving truck coming to work on Route 175. (It was roughly 50%.) So today will mark the first tick in the "incapacitated" category because she threw her back out shoveling snow yesterday. *makes note*

But my other coworkers have made me smile. Since Johnny the Boss isn't here, Brian dug out our parking pad and George just cleared our front walk. And even Diane wasn't too bad.

Of course, the fax isn't working...but it's government. You can't hope for too much.
Snow in Baltimore is Not a Good Thing™. I woke up this morning to weather reports saying that we are going to get four to six inches starting this afternoon through tomorrow morning. A bit of math tells us that this is no more than a half-inch per hour, just enough to set the state into a panic.

(For the record, Bobby heard six to eight inches in Howard County, where we live, right smack in central Maryland.)

Schools have already been closed early for the day. I just got back from lunch at Subway, and there is nary a flake in sight. As of this writing, it is 1:14 p.m.

It feels cold, though, like snow, and the clouds are low and gray. I suspect that we'll get something; whether we get eight inches--or even two--remains to be seen. Maryland meteorologists like to spin ginormous blizzards and we're lucky if we get a light dusting. Sometimes I think I'm the only person in this state who understands that for snow to stick on the ground, the ground must be cold. Three days after we have a seventy-degree weekend, people were in a panic over the possibility of snow.

The ground is cold, though, so we'll see.

How do people react in your areas to snow? (If you get it at all.) Does life stop or are you among the numbers who (rightfully) scoff at we panicky Marylanders starting stampedes for the last roll of toilet paper and creating ten-car pile-ups on the Interstate whenever the white stuff appears in the air?

More Observations of the Winter Behavior of the Common Baltimoron )

I also want to let everyone know that Bobby and I will officially begin work on Nelyo's Candy in January. I believe in upholding my commitments, so those of you for whom I beta and those groups for which I mod or co-mod, I will continue to lend you my help. But if I seem scarce during that time, this is probably why. I will continue to post AMC and to read my friends' list every day, but I might not always reply. But, as always, I am accessible through email and YIM, so if you need me during that time, you know where to find me!

Thanks to all of my friends--online and offline--who have been so wonderfully supportive during this exciting time. And to those of you who live in the area, be safe in the snow! (You might want to begin by not coming anywhere near Maryland!)