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Monday, January 15, 2007

Ice Storm

I woke up this morning to the shrill buzz of an alarm clock find that everything outdoors was covered with a thick coating of ice. It was dark out, so I couldn't appreciate it fully, but branches were bent down low to the earth, and quite a few had broken under the weight of the ice.

One big branch had fallen partially across my neighbor's driveway. I tried to pull it off, but it was too heavy, so there I was, at 5:54 a.m., breaking off smaller branches, one by one, to clear off their driveway. It's one of the responsibilities of owning a tree, I suppose. Like a pet or small child, you have to clean up after it.

Then I got to chip enough ice off of my Jeep so I could get in and see out of the windshield. Oddly, there was no ice on the roads.

Ice storms are not very common here in Michigan, at least not in mid-winter. The weather conditions have to be just right - warm enough for the precipitation to come down as rain, but cold enough for it to freeze. A bit too warm,an dyou get rain; a bit too cold, and you get snow. The ice often doesn't stay around very long, usually melting when the sun comes out.

Not so today. It got a bit colder as the day went on, and so the gorgeous ice remained, covering even individual honeysuckle vines and blades of grass. And then it snowed, big fluffy flakes. I guess winter is really here - sort of.


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