Monday, December 29, 2008

After Action Report

So the snow had melted (for the most part). At work, the slough is almost is over the banks, and several trees have been snapped. At home, the woodpecker continues its assault on the power pole. The garbage has yet to be picked up.

The great Snowpocalypse of Late-Oh-Eight is done with.

And to some degree, I'm going to miss it. The blanket of white, the lack of traffic, the solitude of it all. The fact that I could get out of the driveway with the chains and that, while a hike, the basic amenities were still available. We didn't go hungry, and my Christmas present to my parents got there on Christmas day.

I'm not particularly cheesed about the lack of salt on the road, since my favorite first vehicle (A powder-blue Cutlass Supreme) lost its trunk and wheel wells to the relentless chemical erosion of salted streets in Indiana, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. And the fact that my own job could we worked from home for a couple days worked out well for us as well.

I am less entertained by the failure of other urban services. I can give them the lack of garbage pickup on the week of the heavy snowfall, but after Christmas, when most of the roads are finally passable? The Lovely Bride do not product a humongus amount of trash, but we HAVE been entertaining, and the recycling bin is starting to be a two-person operation.

And I am particularly cheesed about the performance of transit, ranging from buses to planes. A complete collapse of public transportation in the face of this mess is one of the more serious challenges from this storm. Like the taxis out of the airport during that big Thanksgiving blow a few years back, bad weather is the particular period when we NEED mass transit.

(And to that end, proper sanding of the mass transit streets makes it particularly helpful to the car-full among us - we know the bus routes, and can figure that they should be clear as well).

And the airport - the huge numbers stranded shows once more the challenges of the hub airport system. When something goes down, it if reaches the heart of the system, the entire system collapses.

And lastly, the meteorologists. Let's be honest, the timing of these storms were late from the start, causing advanced panicking and letting people's guards down for when the storm finally rolled through. The local weather predictors were about a day off, from the initial dusting of snow (way back on the 13th, which was supposed to be on the 12th), to the post-Christmas warming trend, we were literally a dollar short.

But in general, it has been a survivable malady that struck the Sound for most. I have packages still to arrive and comics have been help up in Oregon for over a week, but in general it has been pretty good. And now we are back to Seattle Winter - grey-skyed and damp.

But then, maybe we'll get snow again. There is always hope.

More later,