Dear Bob, here are some photos of my life here on the campus of Concordia Seminary. I love kids, working with the grounds crew, swimming, playing with my dog friends, and especially my own family people.
Yesterday was a wet mess of a day, the rain, oh my gosh, it just kept coming and coming with brief breaks which made us hope it was over. Around 4 in the afternoon I was passing the soccer field when I noticed the amazing sky. Hurried over to the house grabbed my camera.
In the Saturday Lifestyle section of the Post Dispatch two new things are featured.
The Teardrop Tiny Trailer has become popular with people who like to camp but don't like hauling around a huge RV. When you see the photo of one of these teardrops you have to wonder how they get so much into them.
Smaller models, like the MyPod, are a simple cabin for sleeping and storage. Other models, like versions of the Tab, have beds that become benches, tiny indoor dining tables, a shower/toilet stall, and indoor kitchen.
Then there's the new umbrella for people who want to know where they left it. The Davek Alert Umbrella (129.00) syncs to your phone via a GPS chip and sends out a signal that lets your phone know where it is. This is helpful for those of us who bring an umbrella some place and then forget to take it home. It's also supposedly well constructed and wind resistant. It is also unconditionally guaranteed.
March has been the dreariest month, with rain, chill, more rain, one or two nice days then cloudy. We needed the rain, no doubt about that, it's been a dry winter, but these clouds...ugh.
Yesterday there was about two hours when it gave us some hope, a bit of sun, a bit of blue sky, then boom, back came the gray. And it's so wet right now, there is standing water everywhere, squishy mushy lawns. We even dropped the "Field Closed" sign on our soccer field to protect the turf from getting smashed by people and dogs.
March 24th weather has been all over the place through the years, its not only this year which has been weird. It's also been off and on part of the Lenten calendar. Last year on this date it was Maundy Thursday. This year we're still a couple of weeks away from that observance.
Last March 24 we saw our campus yellow magnolia bloom for the first time, a gorgeous and rare, magnolia variety.
In 2013 we had this, Palm Sunday:
Which later in the day turned into this
In 2012 things looked amazing
In 2011 a visit to Venedy in what we think of as typical March weather, cloudy and dreary.
Great lead in Tweet from KMOX this morning which may or may not make you want to click the link to read the story: "Local business owners say bizarre Spring weather is keeping people from shopping."
And I clicked the link and found this explanation: "On these days where it’s warm, people are out shopping. The next day is 40 degrees, they’re not out shopping because they don’t know what to wear from day to day, so people are looking in their wardrobes, in their closets and saying – ‘well gee whiz, I don’t know what to buy, I don’t know what to wear because the weather’s so crazy."
The KMOX website story had this opening: "Inconsistent Weather Taking Its Toll on Businesses."
KMOX interviewed a Roger Wiggington who owns Don Rodgers and got the above quote. I don't know about you but I have no idea who Roger Wiggington is, the name sounds like a character in an English novel. Don't recall a Don Rodgers store or company either but for some reason he got interviewed about the weather and shopping.
Here's the thing. People will shop if they need or want something or if there's a holiday requiring gifts. They shop for food. So I'd say people not knowing what to wear isn't the best argument for shopping or not shopping. Ever go to the Brentwood Promenade? That place is packed from early morning on no matter the weather so obviously all those people were able to figure out what to wear.
What really bothers me is how important it seems to be to keep shopping. Shop shop shop.
Is today the first snow of the season? Maybe it's the second, I must have put the snow shovel by the front door some weeks ago for a reason. But, in reality we have had pretty much a snowless year. But this morning we woke up to what might have been a two inch snow fall. It's hard to tell the ground was warm enough to melt some of it as it fell.
The streets seem merely wet while the grassy areas are sort of white.
You can see part of our snow shovel in the right bottom corner. It's been there since sometime in January but never used. We won't use it this time either. But beyond the chair are robins who look kind of frantic today. And yes, those are pansies I planted Wednesday when it was in the 70's.
They'll be ok with this wet snow, but if we get the mid-20's tonight, well, the flowers may give up trying. Interestingly, a local traffic report this morning gives notice of several accidents on the highways. Brian Kelly on KMOX said, "Several accidents this morning. Just a little snow but apparently roads are more than just wet."
That's enough to make us cautious going out to the car this morning.
Back in war time 1942 it was forbidden to broadcast weather reports even going so far as to mention whether it was sunny or cloudy. So back then the groundhog report was censored as to the length of winter or the early coming of spring.
Early this morning I walked outside with Ferdie in really thick fog, I heard an airplane over head. This isn't unusual around here and often the sky above the campus is part of the landing pattern for Lambert. I gave some thought to how much courage and/or training pilots must have in order to literally fly blind, no seeing what's below or to the side or to the front.
Drivers heading into work in the dark this morning have a similar issue. We've just gone through a slippery mess and now many have to go back to work in thick fog. Headlights really don't help and putting on bright lights will not penetrate the fog and in fact makes visibility worse.
A KMOV reporter put up a Lambert skycam photo of basically pea soup and asked on Twitter just now, "Do you see any planes." No, I haven't seen any planes but I did hear one. Kudos to whoever piloted that plane in for a landing.
Looking out at the ice on trees and bushes we've noticed that the color of has changed from a rather clear, watery color earlier this morning to bright white. It's hard to figure just why this is, it has gotten slightly warmer so it can't be that the ice has frozen harder. Very pretty but weird. Very different from earlier this morning when I put up a picture.
Yesterday just about everything in St. Louis shut down due to freezing rain which covered streets, sidewalks and highways. It did not turn out to be a thick ice, but ice which formed a glassy, slippery, tight hold on every surface. Today people are venturing out. The roads seem pretty darn good, it's the sidewalks and grassy areas which are very slippery. We took an early morning walk around the campus today and found that except for the cement stairs which go into most of the quads, everything else was walkable. The stairs were coated with ice. The ice on the building roofs was beginning to loosen and slide down onto sidewalks so that's an issue to be careful of. We have no where to go so we're just enjoying another day at home, it feels like having two Saturdays in a row.
The trees are coated with ice as is our car windows and wipers, but it appears that the temperature is rising a bit which should take care of this unless we get the still predicted more weather later today or tonight.