Thursday, February 28, 2013

Avalanche Conditions in Quebec

It's bad enough that there's been no sun for a week and forecasts say this is going to continue for another week. But all this snow! And it's not even March - and March can be the snowiest month.

We have a two car tempo (giant plastic shelter) in the yard and my husband has been dutifully brushing the snow off the top so it doesn't cave in.  (A few years ago, when we had a lot of snow, a woman died under her tempo here in Quebec, I seem to remember.)

But now the snow around the sides of the tempos has become a death trap. (So I think!) 

My son, who is 6 foot three and visiting home after traveling widely, went out to brush the top of the tempo for his father last night and he said he sunk up to his neck in snow. He pulled himself out with his shovel. He came in very upset, worried for the dogs, mostly.

So I got freaked out and ORDERED my husband (when he got home) to do something about it! "We've got avalanche conditions in our own back yard," I whined. 

"You're way shorter than your son, you would have been swallowed up by the snow and I couldn't have done anything about it."

"I know better than to go near the edge of the tempo," he answered in non-challant fashion.Anyway, we've had years with lots of snow."

"But not like this, weird climate change snow.. where it's on the brink of being rain. You know, they say a kid can drown in 1 inch of water. Well a man can drown in 6 feet of snow." 

"I am more worried about the roof of the house," he replied and went to bed.

The tempo in question. A 12 foot high pile of soft snow.. and there's more to come.

"I don't want you to end up a Stupid Death of the Week headline on Google, for everyone's morning amusement, " I continued. As in...  "Ha ha. Did you read this? Some suburban idiot got engulfed by his own snowpile."

And they are predicting yet another week of dreary skies and snow and 0 Celcius temperatures. It's not really snow out there, it's barely FROZEN WATER"

I'm a mother. Once you have little babies and little children your brain becomes re-wired and you worry about everything, even dogs, even grown ups dropping through a snowy sink hole in the front yard.

I can distinctly remember when this change-over happened, when my synapses rewired. 
When I was 30 and I had given birth to said tall son. I would have a recurring dream. I was at home and a friend drops by and asks me to go out (like it happened all the time in college) and I say "Sure" and I go out with him/her and then SUDDENLY I remember. "Wait! I can't be here. I have a baby at home."

Now I am an empty-nester and I worry about my dogs. (My son is beyond worry. He has backpacked the world and happily avoided about telling me about any close calls he has had.  I overheard one story he was telling his Dad. "I went out with some fishermen in Holbox Mexico. They took me out a while and then dropped me out at a 5 foot shoal, in my underpants and gave me a snorkel. It was a reef full of gorgeous fish and stuff, a real dream-scape, but I was all alone out there for a couple of hours. I didn't even know if they were coming back." 


Below. Holbox. I could be there now...Well, thousands of Quebeckers are away this month, and for good reason. A friend of mine is in Bali and updating her friends daily on her sunny adventures.