a winter wonderland

Greetings and salutations, everyone; once again it is I, Chess the purebred border collie, here to bring you the latest news from our garden. You may remember me from such amazingly well-written posts as “Another Useful Post” and “Another Fascinating Post” (which tell you how great they are by their titles), among so many, many others.

Here I am in a characteristic pose.2014013107As you might guess, it snowed last night, a surprisingly wet snow for this time of year, and so today we aren’t doing anything. I didn’t even want to go very far on my walk this morning because I could tell that I’d get ice in my paws about every other minute, so we turned around.

The guy I live with said it was a “winter wonderland”, like he does, and had to shovel a bunch of it off the driveway this morning.


2014013102Here’s the mountain mahogany (Cercocarpus ledifolius). After the big blizzard of ’03 (which the guy I live with says you say “blizzard of aught three”, as in, “why I was a young whippersnapper like you, we had a blizzard like no other, and that was the blizzard of aught three”), half of it was lying in the street, but it sprang right back up a few days later.

2014013106And me on my walk. I think I turned around right here.

2014013105Well, that’s really it. Hardly anything at all.

Oh, the guy I live with says to mention this. He is aware that there is a “big game” on, this weekend. (He thinks.) It’s hard to miss the signs all over the place.

The other day he drove past a cemetery, and there was a sign there that said “United in orange.”

Now that really is all. The guy I live with says he might do some more seed sowing today, but just between you and me, I kind of doubt it. He had to get up five times and release mice from the Tin Cat last night, and so didn’t get much sleep. He also said that today he was going to try to figure out how the mice are getting into the kitchen, but I’m not counting on that either.

2014013104Until next time, then.


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20 Responses to a winter wonderland

  1. Deb Farrell says:

    The Puppy Bowl is on opposite the foooootball game. It’s way better than the other one.

  2. Alison says:

    Yes, there is a big game, but I’m not much into it, to be honest. Although I’m here in the Seattle area, I unthinkingly put an orange shirt on this morning. Oops. I better just stay in.

  3. Chess, you look marvelously cheery in your portrait, all happy in your warm and cozy abode. Wet snow? I suppose there is such a thing as dry snow. Must have been wet snow we were caught in in Yosemite that time it snowed in May. MAY! Only snow I’ve seen. My shoes were iced, I can only imagine the state of your poor purebred Border Collie Paws. Compensation must be the Winter Wonderland world. Love looking at it on the screen, closest I want to get. Stay warm, stay dry, stay cheery.

    • paridevita says:

      Yeah, wet snow. It clings to stuff. Gets into paw pads something fierce. It means it’s not very cold when it snows. Dry snow is actually better for some plants because it doesn’t act like rain, and rot things. Snow in May….. Between 1961, when the guy I live with moved to Denver, and 2000, it snowed once on the first of May. Maybe 1987, he says. Since then, it has snowed in May every single year but one. In some suburbs it has snowed in June. Snow, on blooming roses. He says when he moved here in April, 1961, there was snow on the ground, and he’d never seen snow before, but he should have taken it as a sign…… Back in March of 2003 there was a blizzard where we got five feet of wet, heavy snow. 150cm, I think. It snapped the Modoc cypress here right in half, and the juniper you see in some of the pictures (behind the scary burlap thing). Both the cypress and the juniper grew back. Picture of Slipper in the blizzard of aught three. https://paridevita.com/2012/10/25/the-white-stuff/ Another winter wonderland…

      • Vivian Swift says:

        WAIT!!!! The guy you live with saw snow for the first time as an adult???? I must hear more!

        In 1996 I was a chaperone for a group of students from South Africa and was with them in New York City the first time they ever saw snow. All of them were surprised that snow was so cold, and that it wasn’t as fluffy as it looked in the movies. And the look on their faces when they first held real snow in their hands…must have been the same look when Wendy Darling discovered she could fly.

      • paridevita says:

        No, the guy I live with saw snow for the first time in April, 1961. He’s old, but he isn’t that old. He was nine, going on ten.

        The thing about snow is pretty much the same thing as having certain people over as visitors. It sounds really great, but eventually you want it to go away. And when it doesn’t, then you really want it to go away. And when it doesn’t, after that, well, you get the picture.

  4. Vivian Swift says:

    When I lived in Reno Nevada at the foot of the Sierra Nevadas, we used to get this kind of snow all the time. When it covers tree branches to make them look like feathers, we were taught that the local Native American word for that was “poconip”. “Poco” like the great band led by Jimmy Messina, “nip” like what you do with a flask of vodka at a soul-crushingly boring bat mitzvah.

    I think someone should come up with a prettier word to describe such a beautiful phenomenon. And, since nothing rhymes with the lovely word “silver”, it should rhyme with “silver”.

    “Stillver”, anyone?

    • paridevita says:

      The guy I live with has lots of words for snow. (Unlike the Inuit, who only have two words and not the fifty some people say.) Most of his words have adjectives in front of them. He thinks snow is soul-crushingly boring, and prefers sun.

    • Diana says:

      I knew that there’s no good rhyme for orange, but I didn’t know about silver. The online Oxford dictionary says “Silver is another word for which it is almost impossible to find a perfect rhyme: the only candidate is the rare word chilver, which the 20-volume Oxford English Dictionary defines as ‘a ewe-lamb’ (i.e. a female lamb).” I like chilver, we could use it more often, maybe as a term of endearment.

      • paridevita says:

        You would think a purebred border collie would be well aware of the word “chilver”, but such is not the case. There’s no rhyme for “zaprjagajewii” either……

  5. It had been horribly annoying here what with the winning of that game and the celebrating, and the pressure (ignored! to the annoyance of some!) to celebrate when one really does not give a hoot.

    • paridevita says:

      There weren’t any hoots given here, either. Though it was awfully quiet all day long on Sunday, so we assumed that’s when the game was on. There was hardly any traffic, almost no one drove down the street, it was eerie.

      • We knew who won when fireworks started to go off in the neighbourhood. I knew then that the rejoicing would go on for another week at least.

      • paridevita says:

        That would be bad, here. Fireworks are scary. I even notice them when I’m hepped up on goofballs, like Ned Flanders.

      • First thing I said was (with sarcasm): “Oh good, they won, now let’s scare all the little dogs.” In the suburban neighbourhood of one friend outside Seattle, folks shot guns into the air. Whoopee.

      • paridevita says:

        Fireworks don’t just scare dogs. They also have a strongly negative effect on some vets who have recently returned from places where gunfire is common. No one ever seems to think about that. The guy I live with has a squirt gun (two, in fact) which he brandishes from time to time. Makes the squirrels really mad. ….

      • Yes, I do think of that on the Fourth (which is a madhouse here). I have to confess after the game I just thought of little dogs. I guess cos two of the most gungho footballies I know are vets. Huh. That’s kinda weird, huh!

      • paridevita says:

        Yeah, same here. The Fourth is like a battlefield here, except the year fireworks were banned because of all the fires in the state. Fireworks are still illegal, even on the Fourth, but some people ignore that. However, one particular troublemaker was taken care of, when a certain party went over and took a picture of them lighting fireworks, and that was the end of that.

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