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Thursday, March 4, 2010

The Winter of 2010 - SNOWED IN OR SNOWED OUT?

February's blizxzards were an adventure. The question I heard most often, especially in DC was: “Were you snowed in?”

Snowed in? Snowed out? It all depends on your perspective. And perspective gets stretched when you get hammered by snowstorms every other day - or so it seemed at times.

Here is a picture of the 41 inches where I live in Washington, DC

Here are pictures of the 20+ inches from Prospect Park, Brooklyn.

Marie's Travel Itinerary: DC to Brooklyn or Brooklyn to DC

On Friday morning, Feb. 5, I left D.C. at 5:30 am – driving. I beat the snow and was in Brooklyn by 9:30am where I was able to “telework” (until the Federal offices were closed at 1:00pm).

By Sunday, Feb. 7 very little was moving anywhere. There were no buses, but I got the latest Amtrak reservation available to get back to be ready for work in DC on Monday morning (@ 5 times the cost of the bus!). While I was on the train, the Feds announced that the government offices would be closed on Monday.

The D.C. METRO (operating only underground) got me from Union Station to Friendship Heights only about 2 miles from where I live, in time to watch the Super Bowl. It was still snowing. Not a cab, no public transportation in sight.

I started walking. A few cars were on the road, so I resorted to my history and stuck out my thumb. I walked a hard ½ mile in fresh snow when a jeep, with two teenagers, stopped.

Driver, leaning toward open window, asked, “Are you okay?” “Sure,” I responded, climbing over snow drifts to get to the vehicle. “I just need a ride down Western Avenue.”

A look of shock and disbelief greeted me. “A ride?” and that is when it hit me. These kids had never seen anyone hitchhike. “Yeah, a ride,” I confirmed. “Aren’t you afraid?” came the question. “Nope,” I assured them as they finally opened. the door.

The ride down Western Avenue brought a barrage of questions, “What does it mean when you do your thumb like that? We thought it meant okay. Have you ever done this before?” I answered them all, sharing my hitching experiences in California and across the U.S. in 1968, in Europe in 1965, and yes, of course, into and out of Woodstock.

As I walked the last distance from Western Avenue to my D.C. abode, I knew that these two were planning their first hitching adventure.

Tuesday, February 9 dawned bright under DC’s 30+ inches of snow, with more on the way. The Federal offices closed again, so I managed to snag one of the few early morning buses from DC to NY.

Including the President's Day holiday, for 7 days, I was snowed in Brooklyn and snowed out of DC.
--By: Marie

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