17 January 2011

What Cabin Fever Taught Me

We survived the Snowpacolypse 2011. Barely.

Sunday dawned late. By the time the sky was alight, I'd already risen at 3am, driven to the Atlanta airport, and returned to catch a short nap at 7am. The rest of the day was a tired blur as we were out and about running errands. Rumor was that grocery store shelves were bare. Turns out everyone else from Ga thought it would be worse than Y2K. Our goal was to be back at my friends' house by 7pm, but we were late by 20 minutes. I threatened to "sue" since it hadn't started snowing yet and the weather alert had already began.

The plan was for me and 2 other friends, a couple named Seth and Ashley, along with their dog, to spend the night at our friends' house. In all, there were 5 of us and 2 shih tzus.

Being oblivious to the "dangers" of snow, I didn't think to pack for more than 2 days, and even that felt like overkill. My other four friends, who were all from tundric lands like Michigan and Minnesota, scoffed at Southerners' panic. They bought frozen pizza. At 9pm, right around the time the snow started, we realized that if the power went out, we were screwed because we didn't have any bread. Or food that didn't have to cooked in some way. We didn't have batteries... firewood... a fireplace... or anything we'd need if we the power went out. But that's just fearing the worst, right? And if we lucked out and got a snow day at all, we'd be able to leave the next night. No worries. Just in case, we precooked some food for the next day.

The snow continued all night. By the next morning, we had 4-5 inches. Yes, that's just a dusting... but without snow plows, salt trucks, and on steep, windy, back country roads... we were stuck.

*neither of those people are me*.

By that night, we started making bets on who would lose their minds first. We tried sledding down the street in front of the house, but that turned into snowboarding/surfing on the ice.

By day number two, my friends pushed a truck out of the ice. We also decided baking pastries every day was a great idea. I started rationing the Coca-Cola I'd brought. We watched "Dinner for Schmucks" and I laughed more than I thought I would. Which was a good thing, because that day the snow mixed with sleet from the day/night before and became ice.

By day number three, the Coca-Cola, milk, baking ingredients, and meals were gone. We were getting more and more creative with what was in the cupboards. The sun came out in the afternoon.

On day number four, the "guest dog" broke first, whining at the door wanting to leave. The sun had melted enough snow that we decided venturing out might be okay. It turned out that the main roads were fine... but ours still had serious ice. We were able to get food at the grocery store and soothe our cabin fever. The two friends left with their dog; I still didn't want to drive on the back country road.

I'm writing this on Thursday night, still from my friends' house. Tomorrow is day number five, and it looks like we'll be able to get to the office tomorrow. It's my first day of work at the office, although I've been working all week off site.

I've decided that the South is the best place to be when it snows. Not just because it won't last forever (because we only get a few inches), but because when we get it, we're more able to stop and enjoy it. I mean, our whole world just shut down for four days. As much as people in other parts of the country scoff at how feeble we are in winter weather- I just had four days to enjoy life, my friends, and work from the table of a breakfast nook overlooking wintery, mountain woods.

Sometimes being weak is a beautiful, refreshing thing.

Btw, for right now, I'm keeping my "prologue" inside my story. Every day it seems to fit more and more.

Here are more pictures from our "snow week". The brown shih tzu is Brodie, the gray one is Roi. The final picture just makes me laugh because Roi looks so crazy in it!


  1. Fun pictures! Cabin fever can drive anyone crazy! Glad you learned from it. And glad you're liking where you places your prologue.

  2. Wow. Yep, that would drive me nuts! Here's hoping you get back to normal soon!

  3. What an adventure! Love the term "snowpacolypse"! Thanks for the pics.
    Happy Monday,

  4. Love it! I'm in MA and when we're hit, it's like you say, all the amenities. But it is no time to catch up and get things done. Something about that much weather has you sitting in front of the tv catching up on all those movies you've been dvr'ing. We've got another one pouring down on us now, and her I am blogging. Not exactly writing, but close, right?

  5. I love those pics!

    We had three days out of school last week due to snow, and we're to get more tomorrow into Thursday.

    Stay warm, Kristen, and thanks for your warm words on my blog tonight. :)

  6. I never thought of the weakness of not having snow equipment as being an asset to actually ENJOYING the snow. That's true!!

  7. I love those dogs! I hope you survive your adventure. I'm sure you will. ;) I'm actually headed to the snow next week and I'm going to try and forget how cold it can be and just enjoy. ;) I've already talked my husband into having dinner out every night, so half the trip is already a success!

  8. Hi Kristen -

    As my friend's daughter would say, "You made a memory." You now also have firsthand experience on what it's like to be snowed in. It could come in handy someday.

    Susan :)

  9. Is this your first time to be snowed in? I'm glad you made the best of it--love the doggies!


  10. I was in Nashville last year when a couple inches struck. Without plow trucks, yeah, a couple inches might as well be 18 inches. As long as we don't lose power it is fun to be snowed in!

  11. Adorable dogs. There's nothing like a little light hardship to make you appreciate the everyday. It sounds like you had fun with your friends and that cabin fever was minimal in the scheme of things.

  12. I love that house!! Especially those great rockers:) Sounds like you had a great time! I well remeber days like those.

  13. love those pups and the paw on the ice....sounds like you took the time and turned it into a fun time.....

  14. Day no. 3 would have had me begging for mercy once I ran out of Diet Coke.
    Your dogs are beautiful, and I love their cut. I have a shitzu but he doesn't look that adorable after he's groomed. He just lookeds like a fat poodle.
    Anyway, great post!

  15. Ha! I'll tell my friends. I definitely agree- they are adorable! I actually have a poodle! :0)