Snowy Rhode Island Marina!
Can you believe Christmas is next week? Every year the time flies by faster and faster! I mean, wasn't Christmas just last year? Christmas is a hectic holiday. Everyone rushing here and there trying to get the very last present to wrap and put under the tree. Yesterday, Friday December 19th, it was absolutely nuts out there on the streets. Not only is it the last shopping weekend before the holiday, but, we also are in the middle of a major Nor'easter! I expect this kind of weather in Vermont, and I was used to it after having lived there for almost 10 years. But here in Rhode Island? This was a surprise to say the least! I could understand it in January or February, but before Christmas?
It was midnight, Friday, and I was still sitting at the computer all snuggly and warm. The wind had picked up and our 40 foot sailboat, Ladyhawk, was pitching wildly and banging against the dock. We'd already gotten 9.5 inches of the heavy white stuff and the wind was blowing around 30 mph from the Northeast. We were supposed to get another few inches to total around a foot when all was said and done. It was low tide and the ramp was as steep as it was gonna get. This makes walking down to the boat almost impossible, unless of course I want to slide all the way down on my tush! I've done that before and hit every rung going down. That ride left quite the bruises on my hiney! What were we thinking? On a boat, in Rhode Island, in the water, in the winter! Are we some kind of nuts, or what?
Fast forward to Saturday morning, December 20. This is what we woke up to. Eleven (11) inches of snow! It was hard digging out because of the deep drifts created by the strong Northeast winds. And cold? We're talking bitterly cold weather for the likes of Rhode Island! The normal temperature for this time of year is 40 degrees. Yesterday, the high was only 20! Take that and add 25-30 mph wind gusts from the Northeast, and it gets down-right frigid!
The Blizzard of '78
Although this was nothing compared to the Blizzard of '78, where many people were stranded for days without electricity, heat, water and food, it's still considered a big storm for December. I was living in Rhode Island in 1978. We had 2 little kids at the time and we did lose our electricity for 5 days. We finally had to give up and take the kids and stay with friends until power was restored.
People panic in these situations. That's why the stores were so crowded yesterday. According to Wikipedia, "The Blizzard of '78 eventually gave birth to a tradition in Southern New England known as the "bread and milk runs". After the Blizzard of '78, it became a custom in regions of Massachusetts and Rhode Island that whenever a severe storm approached, such as a hurricane or a blizzard, most Bay Staters and Rhode Islanders jammed supermarkets to buy bread and milk, while the markets tried to keep up with demand."
Living Aboard a Sailboat in a Nor'easter
so, while everyone was busy shoveling their walks and driveways, and digging their cars out, we were shoveling our dock and the ramp to GET to the cars! John took the camera out early this morning and snapped some photos. He didn't get too many of Ladyhawk or Nirvana. He was able to get some of the dock though. At least it will give you an idea of what boats look like covered in almost a foot of snow. It can get really dangerous on icy docks. One slip and you're in the water! And don't even bother screaming for help. With the wind howling and everyone snug in their boats, you'd be lucky to be heard.
The inside of Ladyhawk is a little chilly now. At 3:00 am (yes, I'm still up writing) the temperature outside is down to 20. This morning we woke up to 15 degrees. All three electric heaters are cranked on high trying to keep up. The teak and holly sole is freezing and I have to wear slippers all the time. But don't feel sorry for me. It's not always like this. The summer more than makes up for it! For now, John and Brad are asleep, I have a hot cup of tea, Life is Good, and tomorrow is another day on the water!
A Snow Day is A Baking Day!
Oh, and you know what I do when I get snowed inside the boat all day? I bake and cook! I made a from-scratch real Butterscotch Pudding Cream Pie! I had a little extra that I put in a bowl for myself, and man, was that ever yummy! Stay tuned...I'll be sharing that recipe with you next week for a Tuesdays With Dorie day!