All right, somebody ask me TODAY about the temperatures in these parts!
It was five degrees above zero F. when I set off for the church yesterday morning. The temperature dropped steadily all day and overnight, and twenty-four hours later the thermometer outside my dining-room window registered thirty-three below F. Making no allowances for wind-chill (the wind is blowing).
The block-heater in the car (no garage) was plugged in overnight but I have deep doubts about its functioning. Finally I went out just before ten a.m. and tried starting it. I got "leavemealoneleavemealoneleavemealone" in a VERY bass register before, mirabile dictu it popped once, twice, and then started. Not quite with a roar -- kind of a combination of an asthma attack and falling downstairs, but IT STARTED. Banzai Toyota, I say. And it didn't stall.
Despite all the uproar about idling vehicles, I did let it warm itself a bit; left the driveway at ten and got here to Most Holy and Undivided twenty minutes later. Most of the way it felt like driving a vehicle hand-carved out of some kind of tough wood, with blunt tools, by hemp-crazed artisans.
The snow stopped sometime overnight and it is clear with a little sunshine. The wind is still whipping the loose snow back and forth into drifts...polishing the roads in the meantime.
I have to preside at the cathedral's noon Eucharist...I had a communion call scheduled to make directly afterward, to one of our senior ladies living downtown. But she's left a long and voluble message here forbidding me to try to visit her until the weather moderates. Now it is very tempting to disregard that and "get the serum to Nome" anyway (anybody else out there old enough to remember the intrepid Balto-the-lead-dog?) but I think I'll phone her and thank her winsomely for her kind consideration, and betake myself home early.
This weather, although fierce, is highly desirable. If we don't have at least one spell of these temperatures per winter, the filthy stinkin' pine-beetles' life-cycle isn't disrupted, and they hit the ground chomping in the spring, and decimating even more of the boreal forest, and leaving it fire-prone. There's always something.
And in defiance of my PETA-attached parishioners this morning, I am wearing my mother's mink coat. When I put it on, I just remember that my father loved my mother, very much, and my mother explicitly didn't want me to be cold when I got to be an old lady. So there it is.