*NOTE* Images courtesy of the Edmonton Journal
For us hearty Canadians here in Alberta getting snow storms isn't any more of a big deal than the pain in the bunyakas of having to drive in it, really.
But yesterday morning started out with winds and snow falling that turned into semi-blizzard conditions that lasted all day and night. My manager called in to the office around 11 a.m., still stuck on the Yellowhead highway coming into the city and not moving. She said there were vehicles in the ditch everywhere, including big 'ol tractor trailers. It was hard to see for the blinding snow falling.
It wasn't long before the RCMP had to close that highway, and I'm sure eventually everyone stuck in it got winched out. She made it into work sometime in the afternoon, and like she said, she's got an hour commute coming in and winter conditions never bother her, ever. But this ride in was something else, even she was nervous with how bad it was.
It wasn't so much that it was snowing and blowing so hard all day, it was the fact that it was piling up so darn fast and people were sliding off the roads, and/or getting stuck in piles of the white stuff.
At the end of the work day a young lady I work with was dropping me off at home, and we got stuck just in our parking lot at work. She managed to get out with some really good maneuvering, and the main streets were not too bad. But once we turned in to my side street where there is less traffic, she stopped, afraid to go any further. No worries, I jumped out and would just walk the half block up to my house. But she made the mistake of trying to turn around in the street to go back, instead of just backing out the several yards to get back on the main street.
I stayed out there until she managed to get it turned around, but it took her awhile!
All in all it was a rather surreal day, watching the drifts get higher and higher, and a few of the younger people in our office kept going out with a shovel to try and keep our front walk into the office clear for customers. The flakes were coming down so hard and fast that visibility was poor. And the snow was so wet, it was drenching you just being in it for a few minutes.
Some time during the night it stopped though, and we're not supposed to get any now for the rest of the week at least. That gives everyone time to get shovelled out, the city's snowploughs and Edmontonians with their shovels and snowblowers.
It's certainly NOT the worst of snow storms we've had and there will be more that are worse yet. But it was enough to close highways and strand a lot of people in the ditches.
I was supposed to be going out for dinner last night with my best friend Michele and our good friend Leona for our Christmas get-together. Leona had the day off and happened to be out in my end of the city doing Christmas shopping. Later in the afternoon she phoned Michele at work to tell her how much worse the roads were getting and we didn't feel we needed to be out at night in it, so we postponed until next week.
It was nice for us, just like most people here, just to be in our cozy homes for the evening.
Tonight, our boss is taking us out for our annual Christmas dinner at my favourite restaurant!
Stay warm everyone!