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174 Forecasting Winter 2010-01-08

a few snow flakes on the deck

Winter has arrived in Nashville. It has been cold all week with the highs staying below freezing, but yesterday the forecast was for snow. Nashville went into full alert. The hardware and grocery stores were slammed with customers. The salt trucks were sent to spread their de-icing brine. It was going to be a big one, two to four inches.

After watching the forecast, we went to bed with the anticipation of waking to a blanket of snow. My wife is a teacher and she dutifully placed the telephone on the bed side table in the chance there would be a school cancellation call. As the hours passed through the night I would look out the window checking for snow. It wasn’t there. Checking again and again - it still was not snowing. We awoke to dry pavement.

The phone however did sound an alarm throughout the night, but it was not saying school was cancelled. Instead, the phone was giving us the dutiful "low battery" hail as it gasped for energy from the dying cells.

Most of the county and city schools in the Nashville area did close on Thursday. It was supposed to snow that day so the schools closed. That’s just the way you do it around here. Then, when it did not snow, the schools had already said they were closing, they had to close - I think it is the law!

My wife’s private school did not close, they actually wait to see if it is going to snow first.

Finally, by noon on Thursday, snow began to fall. Jake, the dog, and I went for our daily run. He ran with extra excitement as the sidewalks were covered with whiteness.

Kids were sledding on the grass and making mini snow men.

Cars were sliding down the roads.

The news outlets were filled with reports of road closures and wrecks.

The dreaded black ice had been seen on the roads. The roads were impassable.

Friday morning everything was cancelled. Everything was closed. All for less than a half of an inch of snow (at our house.)

Winter is a special time in Nashville. The drivers cannot drive in the snow or ice, so the city enters emergency mode. We still believe in the weatherman’s forecast, Santa Claus, and the Easter Bunny.

Happy snowy trails.


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