Before I tell you the shocking news about Billings' snow removal, here are a few more pictures from home:
|Jeni's treats from left to right: cookies filled with dates; Victorian toffee, almond shortbread, ginger snaps.|
|Jon kept dropping off brussels sprouts for us to eat. Where did he get them?|
|Picture taking erupts in laughter.|
|Forcing our spouses to join us.|
|Oooo, netbooks! We all want to be connected.|
|Cousin Mike and Jeni messing around in the kitchen.|
We arrived home Monday to find that snow had fallen in Billings on Sunday. Quite a bit of snow. In fact, this November Billings has recorded the second highest amount of snow in its history. Sorry I didn't take any pictures of the six to eight inches of snow which is nowhere near the record in any of the other places I've lived. You can look at the Billings Gazette's Winter Weather gallery here - they seem partial to dog pics.
The remarkable thing is this: snow fell before we left for Thanksgiving. They didn't plow any but arterial streets. Today (Tuesday) as our car floundered from rut to rut, getting pushed all over the street by the 21 inches of snow that has fallen in the second half of November, I wondered what the plowing schedule was. Reading the Gazette, I found out:
"If you're wondering whether the street you live on is going to be plowed, the answer is almost certainly no...for decades, the policy in Billings has been to clear the main streets, spread some sand and calcium chloride de-icer where needed and hope the city's frequent chinooks do the rest of the work." (Ed Kemmick)Meanwhile a related article tells the citizens of Billings that they'd better have their sidewalks cleared or face consequences. So you can walk around the block but you can't walk across the street. Arrrgghhh! Can you believe it? I thought about it for awhile and it has made some fiscal sense. After all, it usually doesn't snow much here. A friend who lived in Billings for 12 years told me I'd be able to ride my bike all winter. However, I am imagining that this winter will be the Mother of All Snow Years. Where is that chinook?
One last picture: the Knitty Brambles beret is being blocked: