Take this snow and shove(l) it!

Wednesday is Groundhog Day. It’s a day when the people of Punxsytawney, Pa., pull a poor old groundhog from his winter slumber and predict, based on folklore and the absence or presence of a shadow, if we will see an early end to winter or suffer through six more weeks of this crap … er, I mean, fluffy white stuff.

Wednesday is the 125th anniversary of the celebration and … just so you know, word has it Pennsylvania is under a winter storm warning. They are probably getting all the “fluffy white stuff” we here in southwest Minnesota were graced with on Monday. Lucky them.

I’ve never really paid much attention to Punxsytawney Phil’s predictions. I figure that unless he says the sun is going to shine and we’re going to have temperatures in the high 60s by the weekend, I don’t want to know how long winter is going to last.

 I found Punxsytawney Phil’s Facebook page Tuesday night and had to click “Like.” This way, I will be forced to learn the prediction for the rest of the winter as soon as I log in Wednesday morning. I should probably log in from home, because if he sees his shadow (predicting six more weeks of this “fluffy white stuff”) I will want to pick up my stress ball and hurl it at something.

If you haven’t already figured it out, I am absolutely, positively, without a doubt, totally sick of winter. In this world of the haves and the have nots, I am a have not in the realm of snowblower ownership.

This morning, I was out attempting to shovel out the end of my driveway as our lovely, biting southwest Minnesota wind blew the icy little snow pellets back into my face.

The more I shoveled, the more my glasses filled with ice crystals. As more and more ice crystals stuck to my glasses, the less I could see, which meant taking my fingers out of my gloves to use as windshield wipers for my spectacles. And, with the frequency of taking my fingers out from my protective Thinsulate gloves, the more my fingers felt like immovable sticks.

It was a vicious cycle.

Neighbor Andy came to save the day (and my sanity) after I had nearly created a wide enough path at the end of the driveway to get out. I told him I was going to gun it backwards with my car to get through all of the snow in the rest of the driveway, and his 10-year-old eyes widened in amazement.

He stepped out of the way to watch from the sidewalk as I shifted my little blue beauty into reverse, stepped on the gas and kept the car between the navigational beacons (well, so it was just between my house and the fence … both of which I didn’t want to hit!)

I slowed down at the end of the driveway to give Andy a thumb’s up signal and a smile, then proceeded to smack the front driver’s side panel into the snow bank. Oops – I shouldn’t have started the turn until I was completely backed onto the street.

Oh well, I shifted into drive, pulled ahead, shifted into reverse, turned the wheel and found success. Off to work for me and, for Andy, a little fun blowing the rest of the snow out of my driveway. Oh, I sure do love those helpful neighbors! (But I still hate snow!)

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