Saturday, January 9, 2010

Snow Unhappy

After appreciating the beautiful, picturesque (yet very brown) landscape of California, it was nice to return home to the lush green of the East Coast. Springtime Philadelphia left me in awe, and I found myself noticing the incredible and historic local architecture in a way I had never before. Previously I HATED the North East for its pollution and overpopulation, but gradually I developed an appreciation for my city and the opportunity to re-experience it as an adult. Summer was HOT, and to a summer baby, I enjoyed every day.

But then the season changed.  It was cool (ok) initially, but only for a New York minute. Very soon my grumbling evolved in a outward disdain for the cold, winter, this dreary city, and most recently...the snow.

The first snowfall began on a Saturday.  Truthfully, it was one of the most beautiful moments to see the pure white snow fall so delicately and abundantly.  23 inches.  But like a needle pushed across a record, my nostalgia was interrupted at 8pm by 1 word. My father: "We need to go out and shovel before that turns to ice."  I know, that was 12 words, but my problem was the "We".  Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, was he serious?  I've purposely purchased property so I DIDN'T have to worry about trifles such as mowing and shoveling.  I haven't pushed a shovel since my teens.  Was he SERIOUS?  Yes. Tragedy.

So I pull out my insulated rubber boots I still had from Inauguration and threw on my brothers old ski coat and went out to brave the cold looking like an overdressed sumo wrestler.  We were the only ones initially, soon joined by our Indian neighbor who just moved from Florida and never managed snow.  Luckily the snow was powder so after an hour or so we cleared our driveways and front walkway and helped our elderly neighbor do the same.  Needless to say I was warm and stayed dry, so it wasn't too bad...until the next morning.

Sunday, 10 am: "Come on, we need to get out there again" he says.  I looked around trying to figure out who he was talking to then pull the covers back over my head.  It can't be me. He heads out without me and I peek outside to see the few extra inches that accumulated overnight.  He can handle that without me (I think to myself).  I hear all the neighbors talking and working together and soon the rumbling of a snow blower.  I'm saved!!  Knowing my dad he'll borrow the snow blower and be done with it. 3 hours later he comes back inside.  Not unusual because he's like the Mayor...talking, waving, taking pictures and kissing I knew "shoveling" was really "social hour".  But anyway, he comes back in and I'm reading a book.

"I was waiting for you" he says. "Really? I heard you go out and then heard the snow blower and thought you didn't need me" I reply, kinda feeling guilty. "No, I needed you" (no he didn't) "Everyone else was out there with their children" (ok, it's all starting to make sense). "I need you to help out."  I reply "But Dad, I was out there with you last night, I did help."  At this point I'm thinking "Give me a break.  I'm a young lady! MEN are supposed to do these things, anyway." Ok, that was a diva thought, but seriously, isn't there someone we can pay to do that kind of manual labor?!? Sheesh!

"I need to be able to show you certain things so you know how to do them."  I choked. Is he kidding?  I'm almost 30, and we lived in CHICAGO!  It's not that I don't know HOW to shovel, I don't WANT to shovel.  He can't possibly think THIS is a skill 1) I don't have 2) need to develop. But I've been guilted.  Needless to say, if it snows again the streets of Philadelphia will be seeing the return of the overdressed sumo wrestler (smh in disgust).  But dearest Philadelphia, and dear God, right now I'm only asking for two things: 1) DON'T let it snow anymore 2) PLEASE make sure this time next year I'm living someplace where snow boots, shovels and rock salt are all distant memories.  Ameen.

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