Thursday, January 11, 2007

UH .... Yeah

I will never laugh in the face of Mother Nature again. NEVER.

Yesterday, getting to school wasn't so bad. I set out at about 9:00 in the morning, walked to my bus stop (I was well bundled up, so the cold wasn't too bad, just the snowdrifts that were past my knees posed a problem). Got to the bus stop, and started to wait.

A Saskatoon Transit minivan with a little light flashing on top pulled up, and told me to hop in. I didn't question it (good thing it wasn't one of those fake Saskatoon Transit scams that rapists like to pull .... ), hopped into the nice toasty van. We picked up a few more people waiting for busses at various stops, then he drove us to the bus. Talk about first rate service. This encounter alone will yield my never complaining about Saskatoon Transit again. Service with a smile in the face of a blizzard is what I got.

The white-out conditions were extraordinary. On my way to school the police had begun shutting down roads in the city where visibility was not only an issue, but a non-issue (i.e. you could not see - that was the issue ... heh heh heh).

I got to school, met with a group of peers, got a lot of really good work done, and then at 1:30 got ready for our speaker, learned that the speaker was cancelled and that we'd have a class instead with our Prof, and then ...

... we got the announcement (@ 1:30 PM) that the College of Law was closing, and that if we could get home safely, we should go.

I found out that the busses were only running until 6PM, so I figured it was time to high-tail it out of there.

At just about 2:00, I got to the bus-stop. There were about 300 (modest estimate) people there waiting for various busses, and the busses were few and far between. So, I waited outside (instead of sheltering in the foyer to the nearest building). If a bus came, I was going to be on it.

Well, at a little after 3:00, I had to go inside for fear that my toes would fall off (my pinky toe had gone numb). At 3:30, a bus finally came that said it was going to Sutherland (the right direction, towards my house). I got on that bus like nobody's business.

I'm going to post a map, to illustrate the next part of my story:

So ... as anyone can see this is a highly magnified map-shot, where on a normal day driving from the red circle to the blue circle would take about 30 seconds (from Cumberland to the Circle overpass, if you weren't stopped by the light on Preston). Yesterday, on the bus, it took us 2 hours. Yup. 2 hours to go from the red circle to the blue circle. I kid you not. The bus was PACKED too ... standing room only. Luckily, I got a seat. There were abandoned cars like crazy littering the road (I'm sure some of them ran out of gas), with snow drifting up over them so you could barely see them - it was kind of spooky looking.

Eventually, though, 3 hours of bus-time later, I was dropped off as close to my house as possible (which, was closer than I thought I'd get - again, kudos to Saskatoon Transit), walked home with frozen feet, and slumped to the floor when I got inside. I'd been trying to get home for 4 1/2 hours. BUT ... I MADE IT!

So ... today, I'm not leaving the house. On the radio they said that U of S was open, but that (probably) a lot of classes would be cancelled. Well, there's no way that my car is getting out of the snowdrift that piled up behind it, until I dig it out, or am ploughed out. AND ... I'm going to save my further bus adventures for a day when I've had some time to come to grips with it all. So ... yup ... I'm going into cocoon mode, and I don't care. Pretty much everything else is closed, schools, libraries, etc.

Oh - and last night, on the news they announced that our neighbourhood was closed. How funny is that. Yup ... you can't come to my neighbourhood, we're closed ... sorry, come again.

Here are a few pics I took this morning, I want to go for a bit of a walk later, and take some more, but with -40 C windchill, I'm not sure how feasible that will be.

Blizzard Aftermath

Super Cold and Snowdrifted In

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