The winter has been quite severe this time around and most parts of US have borne the brunt of the polar vortex and the arctic blast since we stepped into the new year. While the East Coast and the Southern States are getting swathed in piles of snow, with more expected this week, Pacific Northwest got its share of snow this weekend. What started as flurries on a chilly Thursday noon, soon turned to a snow fest. Within a few hours, nearly 2-3 inches of snow could be found all around and more was to follow. As the school buses pulled up to drop the kids off, the air was filled with squeals of delight at the amount of snow that had already accumulated on sidewalks and walkways. For me this was the most snow I had ever seen right at my doorstep, and so when S returned early from work thanks to the winter weather, we decided to take a stroll in the snow. The snow being fresh was really soft to touch and obviously very very cold, but I had to hold it in my hands and feel it. The child in me was having a gala time. A couple of hurried clicks on the camera phone and we were back to the warmth of our home. Even with the blinds down, it felt like the whole neighborhood had flood-lights tuned on, the white snow was reflecting light and even the night was bright.
Friday morning was snow-less but there was no way one could distinguish the street from the side-walk, so it was work-from-home for hubby. With schools closed due to the weather alert, children were running around playfully in the snow, having a blast throwing snow at one another. By noon, it was snow-time again and soon more white frosting was being showered all over the city. Winding up work early for the weekend, we decided to venture out farther from home and capture some of the snowy charm on camera. And so we set out fully geared up, mufflers and gloves and caps on, trudging along on snow. Each step had me giggling with joy, feeling as if I was walking on a giant cake that had fluffy white icing in a fairy land. More snow followed on Saturday and towards evening, the snow had turned to freezing rain. The rain drops are like ice drops and this meant it was harder to walk about. The snow that had so generously taken over every visible surface, was now hardening to ice. While it is fun to walk in snow, it is quite scary to walk on ice, there is every chance of losing your balance and falling while walking on ice. But it was a cosy night as we had a dinner get-together with friends who luckily stay in neighboring apartment communities. Sunday was snow-free, but with the temperatures barely above freezing, we felt it will be quite a while before the snow cover vanished for good. Apparently it had been quite a while since Portland saw this much snow at a stretch, By Monday evening, the movement of cars on the roads had managed to clear out most of the ice. The apartment maintenance guys pitched in by clearing snow from the stairs and salting them to prevent ice from re-forming. After a very memorable snowy weekend, all we have now are traces of snow on the rooftops, and patches of snow on the sidewalks from which grass is already peeking out. What's more, it has been raining on and off since yesterday and so Portland is back to its usual rainy avatar.