Monday, December 7, 2009

Digging Out

Its a digging out day in St. John's. We had our first big snowfall of the season with 38 cm blowing in and sticking around. That's a short cubit, if you are reading somewhere without the metric system. We've got the car to free and a path to the workshop to dig out. Compared to lots of people we don't have a big area to shovel, so I really can't complain too much, and until the winter storm season leaves in the spring we'll be defending our parking space and the workshop path against infilling.

The truth is I find the winter shovelling season kind of enjoyable. I've decided to let heavy snow shovelling days count against running days this winter. I've switched to the treadmill entirely now, but the novelty has lost lots of its shine. Shovelling seems much more like exercise than mowing the lawn and I really like the strategy of it all. Planning out the piles of snow is just the tip of the iceberg. There is the psychological warfare that goes on up and down the street as everyone with on street parking defends their territory. Establishing your parking space early and maintaining it throughout the winter is as necessary for on street parkers as scratching open a breathing hole is for seals. People looking for a parking space will tend to avoid a well cared for and maintained parking spot because its an obvious sign that someone is using that space. Its like smelling another dog's yellow snow.

But its not an entirely defensive strategy - there is plenty of room for diplomacy and a carefully executed preemptive shovelling of a neighbor's sidewalk can establish an important ally and get them on your side early in the battle. Which is especially useful later in the season when you need them to stop the surly teenager in their family from shovelling their snow into your space!

Photo Credits: Tim Rast

Photo Captions:
Top: Looking out the front door
Middle: Looking out the back window
Bottom: Halfway up the mother-in-law door already!


  1. Ah, I remember life in the city. We have a man to shovel the drive, and life is good. I am afraid we sent the snow your way. Take it easy!

  2. ha ha! we've just got a pretty little dusting out here in the cove... nothing a broom can't handle.

  3. According to CBC we set a record for a December 6th snowfall in St. John's - 39.4cm.


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