Let it snow
Solely based on anticipation and speculation, my relationship with snow is sort of love-hate. On paper, I thought I knew what I was getting into when I accepted a job in Tahoe, but you can never really know until you actually live through a snowy winter.
Additionally, it’s clear to me that growing up in San Diego puts me at a disadvantage.
Actually, after giving it a little more thought, and in the middle of writing this column, I am realizing that my relationship with snow is probably more love-terror than love-hate.
Many aspects of a snowy winter absolutely terrify me.
I have never been in a place where it gets as cold as Tahoe, and until a couple of weeks ago, I was completely unprepared for it. Honestly, though I am making efforts to get myself ready, I am probably still more unprepared than I realize. I have never dealt with the challenges that a real winter represents, and without having lived through it, problems will inevitably arise as the winter advances.
Probably the thing I’m most afraid of is driving in heavy snow.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a pretty confident driver, but I have absolutely no idea what is like to feel like the tires on you car have been replaced with ice skates and not be able to control where your car is going.
I don’t own a pair of snow boots and until a few weeks ago I had no idea what they look like. The only pair of gloves I own is quickly looking unfit for my new home and I suspect there are countless other winter items I don’t yet know I should have.
I also don’t yet know how to have fun on that cold, powdery stuff people who are used to cold winters call snow. The only boards I’ve ever ridden on had wheels.
After seeing images of the effects of the polar vortex that hit the Central United States and the East Coast, doubts about what I have gotten into have also grown.
In Eastern New York, the freak weather dropped as much as 6-feet of snow in about 24 hours earlier this week and more is expected. The erratic weather has killed as many as six people and caused thousands of dollars in damage. Many people were also trapped in their cars for more than a day under several feet of snow.
Though those are extreme circumstances, the images and stories had an impact on me.
Oddly, though, a lot of those challenging factors also make up the love part of my relationship with snow.Å
Last time snow was predicted to fall in South Lake Tahoe, I probably looked out of the window of my apartment every 30 minutes hoping to see the first snowflakes slowly feathering down to the ground. Throughout the night, I waited vaguely awake like a child on Christmas Eve for what I thought would be snow piling up just outside my door.
Needless to say the outcome was a disappointment and a relief at the same time.
The truth is that aside from the region’s economic need for snow and the state’s desperate need for water, the idea of a snowy winter is simply enchanting.
For me it will be a completely different experience – a new environment to master.
Like I’m sure many others in town are, I am close to giving it my best shot at a snow dance hoping my willingness to ridicule myself with my lame attempt will impress the snow gods.
After this winter, I want to be able to look at cold seasons and say, “ I can live through that.”
I want to look out my window and see Tahoe the way it’s supposed to look during winter.
As terrified as I am to deal with snow as part of my everyday life, I am willing to bet against myself and hope for snow to fall. I just hope I’m not too much at a disadvantage.
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As the adage goes, life is too short to drink crappy beer. And in Tahoe, where the craft beer scene has exploded with breweries cranking out quality, creative beers, there’s absolutely no excuse.