(NOTE: This post was partially transcribed during my hiatus and is now edited and posted.)
Being no stranger to snow (and actually loving it dearly) I always enjoy it when the fluffy white stuff descends upon the city. It sometimes happen, like this past weekend, when snow overstays its welcome.
Anyway, this past winter definitely started out strong. There was snow in November, the temperatures were plunging, and it looked like it's be a long, bone-biting winter. Now, as someone who has lived in apartments that were in flagrant disregard of inspection and livability laws, I swore that I would never go cold through another winter. My two last years in school were defined by being hungry and cold. Oh, so cold. It wasn't just that the electric heating was never on, and when it was it drove the electric bill upwards of $300, but the general lack of calories made it all the worse. These days, with free heating, I walk around in my boxers in my apartment. A howling blizzard may be roaring outside, and the icicles might be growing ever larger, but I sweat sitting down—that's how warm I am.
The winter, however, had not turned out as I had hoped. By mid-December the snow was in retreated and the horrible reign of thirty-degree temperatures began. It was more of a muddy brown Christmas than white.
Snow did come and go, but one thing I noticed was the general lack of plowing on Warsaw's minor roads, driveways, and parking lots. It seemed up the commuters themselves to hopeless grind away rubber in attempts move (I did lend a hand to a struggling truck.) This, of course, is all part of Poland's on-going war on tire treads. They won't give up until ever vehicle is rolling around on dangerously bald wheels containing less rubber than a Durex® Ultra Thin Fetherlite®. (Just a quick note: what a creepy way to spell feather light. Fetherlite just looks poorly constructed, and I usually go for quality and pride of workmanship in this area. It's not a purchase to downgrade just to save a few bucks.)
My snowman. The snow was so powdery soft.
The snowy park at night.
What winter turned into: a hazy, slushy world.
Besides the unplowed roads, the sidewalks were left as slick sheets of ice. Coming from an extremely litigious country, where poking yourself in the eye with a screwdriver is an actual financial option, I was surprised by carelessness of the city to leave such horrendous walkways. (NOTE: Some law firms actually employ people to map every single crack on the sidewalks of New York, which are then submitted to the city. The city can claim that if it doesn't know about the damage on the sidewalks, it can't be held responsible if people trip on them. So, these mappers make sure that every crack is mapped, just so they can claim that the city knew about the cracks and did nothing (and makes the city financially liable when someone does trip on a crack.) What a wonderful solution!) Crampons were necessary to navigate these icy walks of terror. In some places, sand was scattered or workers with wooden shovels hacked and shoveled the ice, but only on the most heavily trafficked of sidewalks. Others were left gleaming and treacherous for the less nimble.
Practically a lawsuit in the making
I was a little disappointed with the winter, but then again, I shouldn't complain. The US got hammered (bummer I wasn't there.) Plus, I totally missed out on skiing. Well shucks. Anyway, spring is here and I have to finish planning my Easter menu. Plus, I hope the frosts end early this year so I can get my zucchini and watermelon in the ground as soon as possible.
There was snow