The season of the flood

Spring is finally (FINALLY!) here and the sound of ice cracking and robins singing is sweet music to my long-frozen ears.

It’s so wonderful to be able to whistle down Elmvale’s sidewalks without picking through ice. I’ve happily hung up the shovels and packed away my Michelin-man inspired parka.

JF and Tobias, after his bath

JF and Tobias, after his bath

To thank Tobias for getting through the winter, I sent him for a bath this morning. A kind lady named Deb cleaned him top to bottom and he is beautiful again. Our relationship is so much better now that the roads are dry.

Neighbours tell us it has been an epic winter – cold, drawn out, and remarkably snowy. I believe them. For at least a month our front door wasn’t visible from the road thanks to massive piles of snow in our front yard.

What I’m now learning is that with epic snowbanks comes epic flooding. So far (knock on wood) the melting snow hasn’t swallowed our basement. But our driveway looks like this:

To celebrate Elmvale’s first afternoon in the dougle digits, JF and I explored the Minesing Wetlands today. We spotted roads and front yards totally overtaken by water. Still, it was good to feel the earth under my feet and hear rivers rushing past.

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Shovelling, shovelling

When you take what my colleague Doug calls the terminal moraine (the cement-like, billion pound, dirty brown mound left daily by the snow plough) out of the equation, there are some great things about shovelling the driveway:

1)     I get to hang out with JF. Because there is no way I’m dealing with that shit alone.

2)     It’s exercise. Mostly for my back, which hurts for many hours afterward.

3)     I get my vitamin D. If it isn’t after 4:30 p.m., which so far is never.

JF, hard at work this evening

JF, hard at work this evening

4)     It reminds me that I chose to leave my maintenance-free apartment in Toronto in favour of “less stressful” country living.

5)     My car doesn’t get stuck when I leave. Most of the time.

6)     I’m finally using the sorels and down coat I spent so much money on when I didn’t need them living in Toronto.

7)     It improves our relationship with our neighbours. If only they would start returning the favour and shovel our side once in awhile.

8)     To most of Elmvale, it looks like we have our shit together.

9)     It’s helped us figure out which house improvements to invest in this coming spring: paving our driveway (shoveling gravel sucks), installing a new automatic garage door, flattening out our paving stones, and more!

10)   When it’s over, we get to throw all our wet clothes in the dryer and put our pyjamas on. That part is truly lovely.