Monday, March 7, 2011

Spring Break and Snowblowers

It's Spring Break here.  Given that we were pummeled with nine inches of snow overnight, the term "spring" is a misnomer.  Come to think of it, since my husband is away for the week and I'm flying solo with the girls, the term "break" isn't entirely accurate, either.

Still, Spring Break sounds a lot better than Lingering Winter Altered Schedule Week, though, so it'll suffice.

At any rate, early this morning I cued a video for the girls, placed Kerrington in her bouncer, bundled myself in layers, and set out to clear the driveway.  Fortunately, we own a snowblower.  It's relatively new and I've never used it before, but the prospect of learning how to operate new equipment was less daunting than the prospect of shoveling over half a foot of snow off 1000 square feet of pavement before the half-hour episode of Martha Speaks finished and the girls went haywire inside.

I discovered that there's a learning curve to the art of snowblowing, and judging from the two times that I took a faceful of snow from the discharge chute, I'm behind the curve. 

Once the driveway was finally cleared, I lowered the throttle and turned the key to the off position, but instead of stopping, the machine merely downgraded into sickly sputtering, as if it were stuck in neutral.  I jiggled the key back and forth.  I even pulled it out of the ignition, and yet the snowblower still ran.  Worthless little key.

How do you stop a snowblower that insists on staying on?  Certain that I was running out of time, I contemplated parking it in the center of the driveway and letting it run out of gas.  In frustration, I pushed it -- hard -- and finally, the engine stopped. 

When I stomped the snow from my boots and came inside, the girls weren't injured or crying, the house wasn't in utter disarray, and the driveway was mostly snow-free, so I chalked it up to a successful morning, all in all.

It's certainly not sand and flip flops, but happy Spring Break.  The snow's melting fast, I can tell.


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4 comments:

  1. I can totally relate. On the news last night they said the 2" of snow we received yesterday brings the total for our area to 72" this winter. . . . um, yeah - we are preparing for flooding. Happy Spring!

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  2. Snowplowing is on my husbands "job list" but since he often works 24, 48, or 72 hour work shifts I have had to do the plowing myself a few times. Our last storm we also got 9 inches of snow overnight, so I was up early and thought I should do the driveway before the kids wake up. I was successful at starting the blower and successful at plowing half the driveway until I was pushing it along and shreds of paper started flying out and littering on my head. I had chopped up the whole entire Sunday newspaper, ads and all!!! So watch your driveway for that newspaper before you plow, LOL!

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  3. Wow, I wouldn't even know what to do with all that snow. I live in Charlotte and the world pretty much comes to a screeching halt with an inch or so. Props for getting the snowblower going :)

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  4. Thanks for the comments, all. Patty, I loved your story about the newspaper. It's re-purposing a snowblower into a shredder, right? ;)

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