Monday, January 11, 2010

Winter Storm

Folks, I’m probably going to be scarce on the Internets today.

We’re in the middle of a winter wind storm at the moment and my power and internet connections are very spotty, this has been going on for two days and will probably last at least another day or two.

It’s 17F outside and the wind chill factor is really not something you want to experience right now. Trust me.

According to my windbird the winds are at 52MPH sustained here over the house at the moment, with gusts to 75 and last night we had sustained gusts over 80.

I live in a notch above the MatSu Valley, at the end of the Knik Arm (a long narrow bay off the Cook Inlet) directly between the Chugach and Alaskan Mountain Ranges, and the winds are concentrated into a corridor here. The view is spectacular, but we always get much stronger winds here than in Anchorage or even a few miles to either side of us up and down the valley.  Last night it felt like the house was going to come apart.  I’ve got drifts in the driveway chest high, and packed solid as granite and as soon as there’s enough light to see by I’ll be out clearing that so we can get out.  I’ve got a couple trees down, but I don’t think I need to deal with those at the moment.

For those of you waiting for PayPal invoices.  I’ll try to get those out sometime today.  I tried to do it yesterday, by my internet connection was down. 

It’s Alaska, this kind of thing is part of the charm.


  1. You have any kind of handcart or wheelbarrow, Jim? I'm thinking make a mast and sail with a coupla spare boards and some bedsheets....

    Sure, it sounds crazy. That's what they said to Ford, to Edison, to the first guy who sliced up a hot dog and wrapped biscuit dough around it. Were the Wright Brothers crazy at Kitty Hawk? Was Galileo crazy when he took a coupla pieces of ground glass, stuck 'em in a tube and looked through one end? Was Jack Parsons crazy when he gave L. Ron Hubbard a check for several grand to invest in boats?

    Okay, so maybe that last one was a bad example.

    (Stay warm, Jim.)

  2. Hmm. While we had the same temp this morning, our windchill factor was only about 9F. You win this round.
    And I live in the freaking SOUTH!!!

    I keep telling everyone when I left for holiday vacation I left Atlanta, but when I came back a week later it was BUFFALO!!

    Stay warm and don't blow away.

  3. Gosh, Jim, I don't think I'm cut out to live in Alaska. I whine when it's under 50 degrees F in the morning.

    What made you, the wife, the kid, and the cats decide on Alaska when you left the loving embrace of our Federal Government?

    puslypc: Something so obscene it cannot be defined in polite company.

  4. I second Lauren's question, Jim.


    My wife and I decided years ago that we would not live in a place where, if you go outside without a jacket during winter months, you can die. But that's just us ...

    Of course, that's why my previous employer sent me to (1) Fort Drum in February 2003, and (2) Winnipeg in February 2004. Each assignment involved multiple week-long stays over a period of a few months.

    Did you know Winnipeg can get snow in May?

    In any case, enjoy your nature-enforced vacation.

    piersies = weak, cowardly, ineffectual people who try to hide their weakness(es) through multiple body piercings. As in: "Buncha piersies!"

  5. Nature enforced vacation?

    Yeah, right. I still have to go into work, so does the wife - and the kid still goes to school.

    The Navy sent us to Alaska, 15 years ago now. We instantly decided that this was where we'd live when I retired. We came back a decade later - again the Navy sent us. I was the XO of a small special operations unit here in the Anchorage area. When the Navy decided to shut that down and pull out of Alaska altogether I decided to retire and stay.

    Despite the goofs who think Palin is just the bestest thing ever, not everybody is an insane ignorant mouth breathing redneck. We love the place, the wild, the land, and even the weird and unpredictable weather.

  6. Oh Jim, I believe that Alaska is as breath-takingly beautiful as you say. I've been reading Dana Stabenow novels for years and she makes Alaska sound like all that and more. I just have a giant blind spot for *why* someone not born in a place of severe winters would chose it.

    If I were displaced from my beloved Southern California, I'd probably end up in Arizona or Florida, someplace warm (well, usually) and not snowy.

    I've had this same discussion with Steve Miller (the Maine-based writer, not the rock star) over his choice of Maine. Like I said, it's a great big blind spot.

    (And my dad was stationed in Alaska for two tours of duty on the radar stations, waiting for the Russkie Bombers to show up. For serving two tours, he was allowed to choose his last duty station, where he could take his discharge. He chose Castle AFB in Central California. So my blind spot may be genetic.)

    Auphye: A Greek container for rotgut.

  7. I was the XO of a small special operations unit here in the Anchorage area.


    tanke == Lawrence Welk used to say this every week: "Tanke very much."


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