5YAT: They Called It White Juan

27 December, 2004 – –10º Windy & Snowy BLIZZARD100_2172_dec_27

[This post is part of the 5 Years Ago Today Series]

Woke @ 0635 and the snow was deep and fluffy, just billowing in! The radio said it’s a blizzard and had already nicknamed it “White Juan”*

Visibility is very very low!! I can’t see the dogs on either side of the path and the snow is so thick I had to plough through knee-high drifts to make it to the outhouse.

I took some warm water to the chickens. White-out conditions, no trail in the new snow, icy ground under the snow and gale-force winds kept blowing me off the path.

100_2170_dec_27Last night, Rooster #1 and Rooster #2 stubbornly refused to go into the chicken house and instead slept up in their tree. I found them huddled together frosted with ice and looking unhappily puffy. I got them moved into the chicken house and I’ll bet they are sorry they didn’t listen to me earlier.

As I was standing at the stove making myself a scrambled western omelette for breakfast I heard a loud boom-boom-thunk! I rushed to the living room  and saw what I thought was a log rolling off the roof and into the greenhouse. It landed in the waist-high snow so I was able to identify it as the stove pipe… Oh, that can’t be good!

So I abandon breakfast, bundle up yet again, 100_2173_dec_27and brave the gusting winds and snow and looked up – way up!

Luckily the chimney was still drawing and so I figured there is nothing to be done until the wind dies down. I am NOT dumb enough to climb up onto the roof in this wind unless it’ll save the house from burning down.

100_2174_dec_27_editedToday’s petulant loathing is for that bl**ping staple gun. 1, yes ONE!, staple ejected in 5 minutes. And that was the test staple to make sure it was working. So much for getting more plastic on the windows to keep out the wind and snow.

1400 visibility finally opened up enough that I could see the river. It’s OPEN WATER!

Yesterday the earthquake in South East Asia caused a tsunami which washed over coastal Thailand. Hundreds & hundreds dead and lost. Awful!

Spent the day listening to talk to Maritimers about White Juan.  Interesting hearing about the disaster in Thailand so far away alongside with emergency calls through CBC asking for someone, anyone, to help loved ones stuck in the storm with no power and no way to get to  the hospital.

It was kind of comforting hearing Costas talk people through the downed trees & power lines, stuck ambulances, snowed in relatives in far off places, and calls for help from neighbours with snowmobiles. Costas may have redeemed a little bit.

* Note: the name “White Juan” didn’t stick since there was a bigger storm in February which got the name permanently.

Alexa Clark

Alexa is a digital marketer and author with over 20 years in digital & interactive communications in the food and tech industries. Alexa's CheapEats Restaurant Guides, for both Toronto & Ottawa, were Canadian best sellers. She is a recognized authority on social media and has been named one of Canada's 20 Leading Women in Social Media.

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