04 March, 2007

Old Man Winter's Aftermath

Old Man Winter left a pretty bad aftermath after his full-on assault on the mid west! Pictured here is my car on Friday morning - (mostly) buried under about a foot of snow!

Thursday was pretty uneventful - I just got to know my applicant REALLY well! He's a great kid and is really excited to join the Guard in 3 weeks after he's gained some weight (how often to you hear recruiters saying their applicants need to GAIN weight?). The Back to the Future marathon was about the most exciting thing we did (he slept through most of it).

Friday morning I woke up and checked the Doppler weather radar and, after looking out my window, confirmed that Old Man Winter was still attacking the Midwest. I spent the morning aimlessly watching TV and watching the weather radar hoping that I wouldn't be trapped for another night. Eventually I saw a break in the storm was coming - I estimated it would break in half an hour so we packed our crap and headed down to breakfast to await the break so we could hit the road. We ate breakfast and watched as Old Man Winter's assault fizzled out - FINALLY we'd be getting outta there so I went and started the car (and took the picture). By the time I checked out my car was completely dug out with all the windows scraped of all ice. The maintenance man at the hotel saw me start my car and did all that for me! That's what I love about small towns - you'd never see somebody do something so nice in a big city!

My applicant and I hit the road at the beginning of the break and the roads weren't too bad - again, that wasn't going to last long. The roads quickly got worse and I just focused on keeping the car on the road. From where we stayed it normally would take us about 2 and a half to 3 hours to get home. It took us 5 and a half hours to get home! My applicant shared our different tastes of music via MP3 players and XM radio and generally tried to make the trip more enjoyable along the way. Eventually I got him home safely and had to go back home to pack up for Winterfest.

Winterfest is my command's yearly conference where we all bring our families to a resort of some sort where we have team building parties, training with our spouses (sucks being single!), and a formal dinner and awards ceremony. Most people have mixed feelings about Winterfest. Me, I didn't want to go, but in the end I was indifferent about it. I saw it as a time where I'd be forced to hang out with a bunch of people I don't really want to hang out with - oh yeah, everybody gets drunk as hell so they're more obnoxious than usual. In the end it wasn't so bad and it was cool to spend time with my buddies before I ETS.

Anyway, back to Old Man Winter's assault.

I packed all my stuff into my POV because it has 4-wheel-drive and my command authorized the use of POVs due to the weather. I looked at Google Maps and estimated that it should take 3 and a half hours to get there under normal circumstances. The drive turned out better than I thought - Phase 3 of Old Man Winter's attack missed us. The problem was that it was really windy and the back-road highways I had to take were really icy. It took me about 5 and a half hours to get to Winterfest! I was REALLY late so I missed a lot of the festivities but I'm not complaining.

All-in-all, Old Man Winter really kicked some but - but I realize now it will really help the local economy of my home town with the tourism it will bring via snowmobilers. As much pain and agony it caused me, maybe it was a good thing?

I feel really bad for all my family in Duluth as they got hit HARD! My Uncle has some really great pictures here.

Tomorrow I'm going to get myself a message at the resort. I hope I get a young hot girl but my luck I'll get some old fat lady with warts! After that I have to go back to the cities for a team meeting on Monday. I've got some great pictures of the hotel that we paid for. I'd like to show what your tax dollars paid for but the connection here is really slow. I'll show you all soon though.

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yankeemom said...

Hope you got the massage you wanted... ;o)
Keep warm ~

SGT Lori said...