I hope it snows tonight.

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I’m actually hoping it snows tomorrow. That’s right, this hardcore snow-hater who has written entire posts grousing about its inconveniences and dangers, is praying for the white stuff to happen overnight. I want to look out my window tomorrow morning and be greeted with a blanket of white covering everything.

I haven’t changed my sentiments about snow. I still hate it.  The reason I want it to snow is because I don’t want to go to my job tomorrow. In fact, I’m dreading it.

Ever have those times, especially after a weekend or a few days away, where you absolutely dread going back to work? Where the idea of hauling yourself up out of your warm bed at an ungodly hour and battling traffic on the interstate to go to a place you really don’t like much makes you want to sob into your pillows in despair?

Well, I’m feeling that way right now.  Last week was a terrible week, and on two of those days I had to spend an entire day working with people I didn’t like. Not only that, but on both those occasions I handled things badly and didn’t exactly act professional.  I wasn’t able to hide my dislike of these two people. I’m pretty sure the feeling is mutual too. While I won’t have to work with these two individuals again, I’m afraid I might have created a reputation for myself of being a bitch who’s hard to get along with.  People talk.

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Normally I’m pretty easy to get along with. I’m usually pretty quiet and keep to myself. I try to stay out of workplace drama. I never had middle-school-like run-ins with people on this particular job before.   Until last week, I was taking pride in how maturely and professionally I dealt with a variety of personalities, some that are difficult.  The way I behaved last week reminds me of the way things used to be for me in work environments, when my emotions, usually my anger, got the best of me. I try to be mindful but this week I didn’t do very well. What on earth happened?

I think what’s happening is that my therapy is beginning to bring old traumatic events having to do with rejection closer to the surface of my conscious awareness. I’m getting triggered a lot more easily, more quick to anger and more easily offended than usual.  Right now I’m like a raw nerve. I have my DBT skills to help out, but right now they seem less effective than they’ve been.  That doesn’t mean I’ll give up on using them. Oh, hell no. I need those tools now more than ever.  It could also be that last week I just had the bad luck of having to work with two people who were just plain impossible to deal with and seemed to have it in for me before the day even got started.

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I really just don’t want to have to deal with any people at work tomorrow. I’ll be honest–I really just don’t care for too many people. I also don’t like the way management runs things at my company (but that’s another story). I can’t look for another job until I have my own car (I’m still using the company car). I can’t take a sick day because I have the company car. I got my tax return, but I need time to look for a car that’s cheap and will run.

I have no idea what to expect from day to day on this stupid job. At first, the unpredictability of it seemed “exciting,” but now I just hate that aspect of it. This job causes me to feel so stressed out and on edge all the time. And very, very tired.

I know I’ll have to go back, but please, God, not tomorrow. Please let it snow!

Meaning in things we take for granted.

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Today’s the fourth day I’ve been snowbound, after the big winter storm that hit the East coast on Friday.

I had to get to the store, and still can’t drive anywhere, so I walked the mile to the gas station. The weather today is fairly mild and sunny so the walk was pleasant and the snow is melted down enough to no longer make walking so difficult.   While walking I could see that the snow is beginning to melt and a few patches of ground are peeking through.

It’s kind of amazing what we take for granted under normal circumstances. I came across this patch of newly exposed wet earth (pictured above) and saw how dark and fertile the soil looked. Since it was under a stand of large pine trees, this soil is especially rich, having been fed by rotting pine needles over time. It’s a little thing that holds promise of new life in just another couple of months. Everything in nature has a story and is connected to everything else.  Just like all of us.

I guess I won’t be going anywhere today.

The view from my window at around 7:30 AM:

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8:45 AM:

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It shows no sign of stopping anytime soon.

New York street in the snow.

Even though winter’s over and I don’t care for that season, I’m still in love with this photo. (Click to enlarge)

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NEW YORK CITY STREET VIEW PART 1–Photo Credit: Unknown Photographer
Matthew Jackson Facebook Page:
https://www.facebook.com/matthew.jackson.129357?fref=photo

Alright, snow, you’re pretty. Satisfied now?

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As much as I hate cold weather and snow, I have to admit this scene when I looked out my window today is beautiful. Sure, it means another day of not being able to get to work (and my water pipes still haven’t been fixed) but it’s a good day to sleep in and blog.

I might even take a walk in it later or let my dog Dexter run around in it (he loves the snow).

So much snow is unusual here in western North Carolina, but the weather’s been weird this year.

Go away, winter.

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When I opened my front door this morning, I saw this lovely scene.

I’ve had it. This hasn’t been such a bad winter overall, until this month. If we’re going to get snow and sub-zero temperatures here in western North Carolina, it’s most likely going to be in February and March.

Nature, you’re so predictable.

This month has been hell for me climatically. Last week the temperatures dropped down into the single digits and my pipes froze, even though I kept them dripping at a fast clip to keep them from freezing. The only water I still had was a little trickle of ICE COLD water from the kitchen sink. Things stayed like this for an entire week.

Two days ago, the temperatures rose to the low 50’s and I waited impatiently for the water to return. Instead, when I went into the kitchen yesterday morning, I noticed the laminate parquet-look floor I just put in a year ago was soaking wet and squishy under my feet. Further investigation revealed its source–a pipe had burst behind the wall of the kitchen and water was seeping through the floor. I listened and heard what sounded like someone taking a shower inside the wall.

My landlord told me to turn off the water (which requires going outside and lifting the manhole cover by the road) and he’d send someone out to look. His handyman, a drunk named Roger who never really fixes anything because he’s cheap (my landlord doesn’t want to spend any money), is famous for just jimmy rigging things instead of fixing or replacing them. He might as well just carry Duct tape around to use for everything. Last year when this happened, he “fixed” the pipes even though they are probably the original ones that came with the house when it was built in 1908. Because the pipes are uninsulated and UNDER the house, he had to rip out part of the kitchen floor and an entire wall to get to the pipes. Of course he never insulated them, just patched them up somehow (probably using Duct tape). He replaced the original kitchen wall with an ugly piece of ill-fitting plywood. I painted it to make it at least a little presentable. I put the new kitchen floor in because of the damage done to the old one (and the old one was really ugly anyway–dark brown 1970s speckled linoleum).

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So of course the pipes burst again and now there’s no water at all because I had to turn it off to keep the leak from doing further damage. I haven’t had a proper shower in a week. The dishes are piled in the sink and starting to stink. I may go to the truck stop today to take a shower if I can drive there later because the feeling of dirty grunginess is very depressing and I probably smell. I can’t get to my job today (again!) because of the snow on the roads and it’s still snowing. I think I might go out and fill a bunch of milk jugs (which I keep handy for such emergencies) with snow, let them melt by the heat, heat the water on the stove, and fill the tub so I can take a bath. It will probably take hours to do this and about 100 milk jugs worth of snow, but I really need a fucking bath! My hair is hanging in greasy strings and my scalp is starting to itch. How did people before the days of indoor plumbing stand all the dirtiness?

I am also losing money. Last week I only worked two days: one day the office closed due to the icy road conditions and the other two days (when my car was having its transmission rebuilt) there wasn’t enough work to justify having anyone pick me up. My roommate’s car won’t start either and there was no one else to drive me back and forth to work. Thank the Lord, my car’s fixed now (and runs better than it has in two years) but I still have no f*cking water.

Now the temperatures are dropping again, into the teens, and the handyman, who apparently finally realized the house needed replumbing and was going to come out today to start working on that, just called to say he wouldn’t be able to do it with the temperatures this low. It’s supposed to remain this cold all week.

This really bites. I hate winter with all my body, mind, and soul. Maybe I need to just move to Florida or something where I will never have to deal with freezing pipes, cars too cold to start, icy and snowy mountain roads, and just plain being cold all the time.

Why anyone in their right mind could love winter (except for wealthy people who don’t have to drive to a job and get to ski and snowboard all winter) is beyond my comprehension.

Spring, hurry up and get here! PLEASE.

Snow and sky.

I took some photos around Asheville, North Carolina yesterday and today. Yesterday’s photos are the sunny ones. Today’s are the ones with the trippy looking sky. It’s warmed up quite a bit, with temperatures above freezing for the first time in a week.

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If you click this photo to make it larger and look closely at the left hand side where the land meets the sky, you can see the top of Mount Mitchell, part of the Black Mountain range of the Blue Ridge, and the highest peak on the East Coast. It’s covered with snow.

Other snowy photos from yesterday:

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The sky is on hallucinogens! (these photos are from today)
These photos don’t quite capture the almost otherworldly weirdness of the sky today. These are not storm clouds. I don’t know the name of these wavy clouds but they are shaped by wind currents.
Click the photos to enlarge.

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why I can’t stand snow

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“Sooooo….I hear it’s gonna be a rough winter this year.”
ARGGGHHHH!
I hear this every single year, starting in about August. It drives me insane. First of all, how does anyone know how rough the winter’s gonna be? Weather forecasters can’t even predict the weather right most of the time DAYS ahead, never mind for the long term. Flipping a coin would probably do just as good a job predicting the weather. Whenever people use this phrase, I want to slam my head through a brick wall. Why? Because it almost seems like a taunt to me, as if they WANT it it snow all winter. It’s also usually said by someone who has four wheel drive and fancy snow tires. They’re prepared.
Well guess what? I’m not.

Sure, snow is pretty and all, and it’s nice on CHRISTMAS because it suits the season and on Christmas, most of us can lounge around at home in fuzzy slippers and pajamas all day if we choose. Unless we’re visiting relatives, we don’t have to DRIVE IN IT.

I detest driving in snow. It scares me. No, scratch that. It TERRIFIES me. I drive an old car and my tires are almost bald. I don’t have four wheel drive, and I slide all over the road. For me, it doesn’t matter if it’s snow or ice. I STILL SLIDE. And that’s fucking scary. I feel like I’m putting my life at risk every day I have to drive to work when it’s snowing. I’m sorry I don’t have 4-wheel drive and new tires like you do.

I also hate being cold. Winter is incredibly overrated. Think about it: it’s cold, it’s wet, it gets dark early and stays dark late into the morning, and everything is dead and colorless. The only colors to be seen are gray, brown, black and deadly WHITE if there is snow on the ground (until it turns into black and brown slush a day or so later). After the colorful festivities of Christmas (which is barely into the winter anyway), there’s nothing left to look forward to until spring.

You also have to wear layers and layers of heavy, uncomfortable clothing that takes up time in the morning that could be better spent surfing the web, writing a new blog post, reading your daily affirmation, or leisurely nursing your cup of hot coffee instead of gulping it down. I can’t stand the itchy scarves, gloves that make you drop things, sweaters that make you look like you gained about 50 pounds, and hats that make your hair look like crap when you peel them off and sometimes give you electric shocks.

Oh, and there’s the cleanup too. Spending half an hour scraping the white stuff off my car windows and shoveling it out of my driveway so I can get where I’m going is not my idea of fun.

For normal people I just don’t get the love of snow.

I suppose I can understand someone who doesn’t have to work liking snow. They can sit and stare out the window at it all day wearing their jammies, or go out and build a snowman. That’s why kids like it–they get a day off of school. Most adults do not. If I want to see snow I’ll look at a picture of it, thank you very much.

I can understand why someone who can afford to go skiing every winter would love snow. But how many people are there who can actually afford to do that? Definitely a lot fewer than the number of idiots who smugly announce what a rough winter it’s going to be.

So I have one thing to say to you if you say those words to me:
Shut the fuck up and go fall in a snowbank.

I’ll take the bugs, heat and humidity of summer any day.