First Real Snow of the Season

Late afternoon at the Ski Track

Late afternoon at the Ski Track

We had our first real snow of the season yesterday. Oh, sure, we had a couple of minor storms in December, but they didn’t amount to much, and didn’t really stick. I’d say we got about 10 inches of light snow here.

It’s amazing what a difference having a snow blower makes. I rather enjoyed it. First I cleared our driveway, then I cleared the drain across the street and then cleared the ends of a couple of neighbor’s driveways to boot, before heading out to breakfast. 

The porch ceiling was leaking, so after I got back, I got up on the roof and cleared off the porch roof, and roof raked the main roof. In hind sight this may not have been a great idea — the sun warmed the roof, and melted the scraps of snow that I left, and this meltwater then leaked through the porch ceiling. It does make me more certain that the leak is related to the gutter; I think when the gutter backs up, or the wind is from the south, the water is getting in behind the gutter.

After clearing the roofs, I changed into my ski clothes and headed over the Weston Leo J. Martin Ski Track, for my first skate skiing of the year. I was a little hesitant about it, because my back has been bothering me, and because skate skiing has always been painful for me. I generally set a 20-25 minute timer on myself.

I don’t know whether it was the fresh waxing I gave the skis yesterday, or the powdery snow, or the fact that I was on the extended trails, but it actually worked out pretty well. I still tired easily, but it was just as much my arms as my legs. I definitely felt that I had the right skating motion, and was actually able to skate uphill (for short distances). I actually spent over an hour on the trails; I was cold at times, partly because I’d been sweating, and I still had to stop continuously because I was running out of steam, but it didn’t hurt much. Does this mean that I’m finally getting the hang of it? Man, I hope so. If I am, then maybe it’s just a matter of practice before I can go further without stopping. 

At least, I can hope.

Happy 2017!

Happy New Year! This New Years Eve was the first one in several years that I skipped First Night. We had company arriving right around the time I would have had to leave to get into Boston, and looking at the schedule, there wasn’t much I wanted to see. The whole event has become rather anemic; besides the fireworks, there was only one event I wanted to see, the organ and brass performance at Old South Church. Given that, I decided to skip it.

For some reason, the number 2017 is weirding me out a little. The last two digits are getting big enough to force home the point that we’re really in the 21st Century. (So where’s my hover car?)

I’ve been off the past week, but I’ve been experiencing some health issues that kept me pretty close to the house most of the week. After the snowfall up north Thursday, I decided to head up to Windblown Friday, despite the fact that my back still isn’t feeling great. It was a good decision; I did about 3 miles on touring skis before the battery in my phone died and the GPS tracker stopped. I had a great time, and in fact, my back felt better the next day. I guess my body is telling me it needs more exercise.

Today, we had Christmas part II at our house. My two sisters came, and we exchanged gifts with that part of the family. I got my nephew a watch, and it looks like he liked it. Tomorrow, the tree comes down. It’s been a pretty good tree – it’s starting to dry out a bit now, but it’s held its needles pretty well. Looking at it in the afternoon light – today was the first day in a while that it’s been sunny – a couple of the ornaments caught my eye, so I took pictures of them for possible future use.

I saw this post on Brent Simmons’ blog last week, which fits my feelings exactly:

If 2016 was a tough year for a number of reasons, it was tough especially because we agreed to hand a machine gun to a monkey.

So we can all agree that we’d like to put 2016 behind us. Good riddance to a bad year.

The problem is that 2017 is the year that the monkey pulls the trigger.

I am still deeply worried about Trump. Probably more so than I was right after the election. Nothing he has done since the election has reassured me.