Weather stories are a fact of life for local reporters like myself. We want to keep our readers informed about what they can expect as they go out to face their day.
With a furrowed brow and determination in our hearts, we head out the door to get a first hand perspective.
Things on Highway 101 were pretty decent at the start as I joined in with my fellow commuters at the Middle Sackville exit March 23. Not great, but not bad.
Once I hit Mount Uniacke, past the bright blue East Hants sign, everything started to change for the worse.
The thin black lines on the road, my paved guardians, were consumed by pillows of snow that made my Toyota Yaris swerve uncomfortably.
Knuckles got whiter, speed dropped, four-way flashers flipped on.
I knew I was in for an interesting ride into the office, usually a 30-minute jaunt with podcasts playing in my ear – this time, a wind tunnel through salty hell.
Punctuated by a snow plow taking up almost the entire visible road ahead, spewing chunks of salt behind as it filled the left-hand lane and half of the right, dozens of cars trailed behind me, waiting for me to take my moment to strike.
Seizing the advantage of a downhill glide, I go as far over to the right as I can manage and slowly pass the plow – no offence to the driver, I know he has an important job to do, but I’d rather not be stuck on this highway forever.
Maybe it’s arrogance, maybe it’s hubris, but I wasn’t waiting any longer.
I make it past the honourable plow and spot a few cars pulled over by stark white police cars. I breathe a sigh of relief, suddenly realizing I’m not sure what I did – passing on the left - was completely legal.
I continue towards sleepy little Windsor and my pleasantly warm office beckoning me so I can start my day.
The road gets bumpier, any hint of pavement is gone, and now that I’ve left the plow behind, I actually start to miss it.
Gritting my teeth, I decide to make my way into what appears to be a new middle lane that has formed out of divets in the snow. Apparently, this is where drivers decided was the best route to take, so I follow suit. It’s better, but not by much.
Another car pulled over – can’t tell why. I give them what distance I can safely.
During my journey I realize I’ll probably be writing about this – schools were cancelled today, there’s probably some accidents too, I could stop for a photo – but I don’t want to become the news myself. I press on.
When I get to the office I call one local fire chief for the scuttlebutt, but he’s away on a conference, I call another, Andy McDade, the fire chief out of Brooklyn – he says they responded to medical call when EHS was delayed in getting there.
They managed the scene with no issues and I breath a sigh of relief.
This is winter (what’s left of it) in Nova Scotia.
It’s unpredictable, it’s dicey, it’s white-knuckled.
I should have pulled over to take a photo, or maybe I shouldn’t have come in at all.