We got our first significant snow last night, just in time for me to drive home over the Malahat from an afternoon concert in Victoria. Dark, fog, blizzard, winding mountain highway, very slippery roads. I thought it was just the Malahat, which has its own personal weather microclimate, but the heavy snow continued right into Duncan. But I had good company to keep me calm, and good tires on the car, and I made it home safely. Then I counted my blessings.
This being Lotus Land, the day after a Big Snow means a Big Melt. And a Big Clean Up. We had some tree and shrub casualties because of the weight of the wet snow. One pretty-small tree came down entirely, considerately falling right across the road instead of on an outbuilding. The largest rhododendron lost two large branches, and one big euonymous split right down the middle and will have to come down.
If you have been reading this blog for a while you may remember I have a love/hate relationship with our many euonymous shrubs. First came the hate part: they look like insects. Then came the love part: they are glorious in the fall and have pretty berries. Today we're back to the hate part: every time I shook a weighed-down branch to clear it of snow it would snap back and hit me in the face with its many twiggy frozen bits. First I tried standing in a better position and I still got whacked. Then I stood really far back and used a good kick to clear the snow and I still got whacked. Its going to take some mighty pretty berries to coax me back to loving...
With the sun out the snow is melting like crazy, falling in drops and wet clumps from all the branches overhead. Which can make for an unpleasant surprise if you're in the wrong place at the wrong time. It's quite meditative, watching it fall in the pond - the pond almost seems animated, or stocked with really adventurous fish.
The chickens were understandably hesitant to venture out into the world this morning. The old girls because they know better, and the youngsters because they've never seen snow before. Every few minutes one would wander over to the door, peer down at the white stuff, look to the left to see if there was snow in that direction, look to the right in case it was different weather over there, and then wander back into the warmth and safety of the coop
Kim stood outside the chicken door trying to coax them out with a "Where are my brave little chickie-chickies?" and finally she just shouted at them "What are ya, chicken?"