winter is coming
Washington, D.C. does not know how to handle winter, as anyone who has lived in the District will readily attest. At the slightest hint of snow, public schools close, government buildings shut down, stores sell out of their stocks, and public transportation grinds to a half. With snowfall this weekend predicted to reach the highest level in a hundred years, potentially, D.C. authorities hit the panic button early. Schools closed before a single snowflake had fallen. We also got half a snow day, with FSI joining other federal agencies in dismissing all staff by noon.
By 4pm, only an inch of powder had accumulated, but our neighborhood already resembled a ghost town. There were no cars on the usually busy boulevards, and even the Starbucks shuttered its doors. The store’s management no doubt had taken to heart the dire warning from some D.C.-area meteorologists that Washingtonians should prepare to spend their entire weekend wherever they happen to find themselves Friday night.
After returning to the nation’s capital from Maine, where we had spent the winter holiday, we had enjoyed a week or two of D.C.’s mild January temperatures. However, real winter finally arrived this week. Temperatures dropped to an uncomfortably frigid range for several days, and a light snow fell twice — a precursor to this weekend’s so-called “Snowzilla” storm.
One of D’s goals for this winter was to put Munchkin on skates. Our first attempt — at a hockey rink in Maine — was a total disaster. He screamed bloody murder as soon as we approached the ice; S wound up simply standing on the ice and holding him in her arms most of the time. Our second attempt — when D’s parents came to visit last weekend — was as much of a success as the first one had been a failure. We went to an outdoor rink, and it’s probably fair to say that the rink’s “penguin assistants” played a big role in ensuring that Munchkin had a great time. He loves penguins, and D plans on taking him back every weekend he can.
Meanwhile, S has signed Munchkin up for swimming lessons — both to teach him water safety and to give him an activity to get him out of the house for the days when the weather is too inclement to play outside. The first class was supposed to be tomorrow, but with the approaching snowstorm, it looks unlikely that it will take place. So here we are, drinking tea, reading books, watching the flurries swirl outside, and gearing up for a long weekend indoors instead.