It has been snowing for months. This winter started the first of November and has not let up for a moment. It is February now, February 13. There has not been school for over a week and I can hear the mothers crying.
Snow or not. I got shit to do. I put on wool socks, fleece leggings, two sweaters, snow pants and my big, big coat (Michigan people will understand what a big, big coat is). I crammed my feet into my boots, found my ski gloves (which have never seen a ski slope and never will) and pulled on a hat with ear flaps.
I have to pee.
Ok, try again. This time I made it outside.
Not only is the snow over my boots, but well over my knees. I started out just shoveling the steps and deck. Then someone stopped to tell me that one of my peacocks was sitting in the road around the corner. I knew I couldn’t get any of the gates between our house and Levi’s, (a short cut) so I walked around the block by the road. I was amazed and dismayed by the amount of pure ice under the snow on the snow. It was like they used a Zamboni instead of a plow. It’s a good thing I had all the padding on my fanny, but I was almost helpless as a turtle on its back, when it came time to get back up.
As I rounded the corner, I could see something spotted white in the road. It was my youngest partial pied, peacock. There she was, just sitting in the road. I went to pick her up. She flew to a nearby fence. The snow is hip deep there. Just as I got to her again, she flew towards our back yard. I assumed she would beat me home.
I repeated my earlier performance on the ice as I waddled home. She wasn’t there.
I don’t know where the hell she landed. Not only that but her mother (also white) and one of her brothers is missing. Now, I understand how I could not see a white peacock in the snow, but a technicolored one?
So the dogs (Sophie had a playdate ) and I walked out back to look for them. The dogs thought this a wonderful opportunity to knock me down in the snow….repeatedly.
Damn, the wild duck who can’t fly is back by the far fence, bogged down in the deep snow. I chase. I miss. I chase again. I miss again. (Now you have to picture this in over the knee, snow motion and two unruly dogs) She gets into the goose pen at the far corner of the fence line. Ok. I can corner her there. One problem. The gate is closed and a foot higher than I can climb over. Knee deep snow, remember? Not only is the snow holding the gate, but it is frozen to the ground and post.
I need to cut the straps on the fence so I can lift it straight up. No knife. That’s ok, I can take a shortcut to the shed through the garden. It would have worked, but the gate at the other end is also buried in snow…..annnnnd, no knife.
Ok. Back up, go around the yard, making a new trail (knock it off dogs!) find a shovel and dig out the shed door to get a knife.
Nope. All that was there was a dull machete.
I got the machete, retraced my trail (Damnit dogs!), cut the straps, got the duck and continued to walk the fence line looking for peacocks. No dice. No peacocks.
So I make it back to the shed with the duck under my arm (Did I mention that both dogs are having a great time knocking me down in the snow?) Put the machete away, the door won’t close, so I stuff the duck in my coat and shovel and chip till it does. The duck shits.
At least it’s warm
As we are trudging back to the house, Sophie decides to impress her boyfriend and chases the geese. The geese fly. One goose flies over the fence. Son of a bitch.
I put the duck away. Feed the duck. Count peacocks…yup, still three shy. Go through the house to get out the front door (another gate that won’t open till June). Where is the goose?
Oh, of course, he is about 50 foot into the neighbor’s yard; in snow so deep I can only see his head and neck. I almost get to him and the other neighbor across the street fires up the tractor / snow blower. Goose flies into the road. I get to the road (am I having a heart attack or is it just the duck shit burning my skin….must be the duck shit) By now the goose is down the street, halfway to the church.
So it’s back in the house to get a stick for herding the goose (the net is frozen to the rabbit pen) and start off down the road. The lovely guy on the snow blower, turns the shoot in my direction. Thanks bud; it will help cool down the duck shit.
Finally, I manage to get in front of the damn goose and turn him back. We are making good progress; the snowbanks are keeping him in the road. Just as we get to our mailbox, idiot guy blows snow at the goose. Goose tries to fly. I tackle him in midair. (The goose, not the guy)
Flipping off the snow blower guy, we head back through the house with goose struggling in my arms. We almost made it. Dogs came in while I was chasing the goose and were lying in wait.
Surprise attack! Goose beats the snot out of me and I drop him. Goose shits in kitchen. I slip in goose shit. Finally cornered goose in the bathroom and returned him to the group outside (who all this time have been cheering for snow blower guy).Now I have duck shit all down the front of my sweater and Goose shit all over the butt of my pants.
Screw the peacocks. I shovel a narrow path through the deck and give up.
That’s my snow day.
And they wonder why I drink.