JulieLeung.com: a life told in tidepools

pictures and stories from the water’s edge

JulieLeung.com: a life told in tidepools header image 2

Grateful for garbagemen…

January 8th, 2004 · No Comments

The slush, gray skies and a bit of cabin fever this week made me myopic. Getting out today, feeling fresh air and buying fresh food, reading a fresh newspaper, all helped me realize many reasons I have to be grateful, even in the midst of this storm.

1) We didn’t lose our power (yet).
Bainbridge has some local legends any long-time-islander can tell you, about losing power for days and days during winter storms. When this house was being built, we seriously considered having a generator installed so that we would be able to survive should such a storm occur again….after examining the costs, we decided to take our chances, forgoing the generator and splurging on a slightly-larger-propane-fireplace which could keep us warm in an emergency.

However, I am sorry that many others in the area such as Troy and Gay have lost their power. 35 hours – yikes! Last year we lost it for about a day and that was plenty for me! Throwing out the contents of the refrigerator was something I’ll remember…The lights have been blinking but so far we have been all right.

2) We are not stranded at Sea-Tac airport.
One mention in Seattle Times snow coverage this morning said that some passengers had been waiting 6 hours, after many flights had been cancelled, and the update this afternoon says that thousands have been stranded.

Ted and I do have some idea what it is like to be stranded at Sea-Tac. In 1996, we came up to spend Christmas with my family. The day afterwards, we were sitting in our hotel room and saw snow coming down. Knowing what Seattle is like in snow, we left earlier than we had planned to leave for our flight that day. But our flight got cancelled and the airport shut down. We spent 36 hours waiting, sleeping on the airport floor, in line with others, desperate for any kind of flight to anywhere in the Bay Area. At the time I joked we could write a TV movie about it. Was certainly a bonding experience but not one I’d like to repeat, especially with 3 little children….I do feel for those stuck at the airport in the storm.

3) We got rain.
Okay, yes, in the Northwest we usually have rain, but I have to say I am glad it is rain and not snow. I am glad the temp is closer to 50 rather than 30. I am glad the snow is melting. It feels almost balmy. I can only imagine what would have happened if colder temperatures and more snow had arrived instead….

This morning instead of the treadmill, I decided to try going around the block, jogging in the slush and snow. The first loop around I spent creating a strategy on the sidewalks, depending on who had shoveled (a big Thank You to those who did!). Even though I was going slow it was still a lot of fun to be outside again. I saw a few snow forts created yesterday, curved walls of white.

Later in the morning the girls and I were able to get out and go downtown. Our neighborhood was still a bit slushy in places, but most of the main streets are fairly clear.

4) We have a kind and thoughtful garbageman.
This afternoon I heard the roar of an engine going around the block…I panicked after peeking around the corner – it was the disposal truck. I had put our cans away yesterday after hearing that our pick up was cancelled. But here was the truck…Ted heard my exclamation and came out to help me run the cans up our driveway. The man driving the truck said he wasn’t supposed to be here but he didn’t want us to have to keep our garbage all weekend. He mentioned that the disposal company is close by anyway. Talk about being a good neighbor! I was wondering how we were going to keep two weeks worth of trash and put it out safely for pick up next week….

So I’m grateful for a generous garbage collector. I’m grateful for lights, heat – (oh, yes, phone and computers too) – and a warm bed for sleep…. and even the sound of rain on my roof as a lullaby tonight….

Tags: news