Tuesday, November 1, 2011

An Interesting Weekend...

Hello Friends. This was an unusual weekend that just passed. It started with an unseasonal winter storm watch, which turned into a warning. A big snow system was supposed to move into the area starting Saturday morning. No one really seemed to accept it as a possibility, though, which I think is funny. I was certain it was coming in, because so far, the weather predictions in this area have mostly been reliable.

It started out on Friday, with sun, fall foliage everywhere, and plans for a Halloween party after a day at a bonsai class in New Jersey. Fun, with no drama built into the plans. The predictions for snow came, and we figured that it would maybe drop an inch or two on us, which would melt away fairly quickly. So we headed out on Saturday morning, early, as our class started at 9 am and was almost an hour away. (We thought.)

At left is what it looked like when we left in the morning... what was falling looks like rain, but it was actually a giant slushy, sprinkled on us by the powers that be. It sort of looked like snow, but after landing, it was like rain... it's called rain/snow. Ha ha. 

As we got up to the All Shapes Nursery for our bonsai class, it was actually snowing, and had accumulated about an inch of snow or maybe a little more, and was looking like it was going to be an interesting return trip back to PA.

At one point, I came out of the greenhouse to go to the main house to use the restroom, and below is what I found outside!

Fall trees with snow...

It was a winter wonderland, somehow! In October! Now, in class, we'd been hearing that tick tick tick of snowfall on the plastic sheeting above us. However, as the plastic wasn't transparent, we couldn't tell if it was actually snow or rain falling. I found out it was snow when we came out for our break. THEN, as we were back in class, we'd hear swoooshhhh.... as sheets of built up snow slid off of the roof, sections at a time. Tick tick tick swooooshhh.... tick tick tick tick tick swoooooshhhh.... my mind kept noticing that it wasn't stopping. Although the class was interesting and fun, part of me was worried. We'd brought my Mini out to Jersey, and there was a snow storm going on outside. Were we going to be able to get OUT of here? That was the question of the day.

The snow-covered trees beside the road
A leaf trapped in snow on the roof above

The leaves on the ground outside , after some snowfall

Outside of the greenhouse we were in
So while all this snow was building up, we were actually cozy inside the greenhouse, learning how to control little plants and make them look like old miniature trees... it was really fun!

K was especially adept at it. He saw what he wanted, and he made it happen. His tree looks amazing! I was in awe, actually. Mine started out with good intentions, but didn't turn out quite so nice.
How my tree started out
It could be that I was distracted by the snow. Or I'm just not cut out for the Japanese art of bonsai. I don't know. I'm a fair gardener, but apparently that's where the talent ends!

Anyway, there were all kinds of lovely bonsai trees in there with us for inspiration...

Look at that trunk! 
Love all the greenery at the base

Very exotic! The yellow flowers belong to it

Like a rainforest floor... so cool

A ficus made special
 After the class was over, we used the restroom, and came out to leave. Everyone had gone except for a guy in his BMW, which K had to help push to get through the thick snow in the parking lot. Well, guess what? He also had to push the Mini. Once out of the parking lot, and then twice more after we got onto the long, unpaved road leading out of the nursery... it was a long road... and K didn't get to ride down it. After the last push, he told me to go down to the road, and not to stop, so he had to run about fifty yards in the snow behind me!

The road from the nursery

Roads weren't quite plowed

Our backyard when we returned

Neighbor's power was out, luckily ours wasn't

 I won't describe the harrowing trip back to Bethlehem. Let's just say it wasn't the most relaxing trip. Then when we got back, we thought we'd be out of power, but we got so lucky! Most of the area had no power... the downtown area was mostly out of power, but the block my work sits on was fine! And our apartment had power, also... though most people we know didn't have any power. It was COLD, too. Especially that night. People stayed with others who had power, or stayed in the booked up hotels and motels. It's been crazy. The next day, I had to go in to work, and here are a few things that I saw along the way....

 It was a mixture of autumn and winter, dramatically juxtaposed. I had a lot of fun photographing the variety of foliage and snow. (Though my fingers and hands got really cold in the process!) It's been so cold that the snow hasn't actually all melted yet. There were downed tree branches on every street, and the power still hasn't been restored to everyone's homes. It's pretty crazy. The weight of the snow on the still-cloaked trees caused lots of branches to break off from the weight, and there was a lot of property damage as a result. No one has cable, and a lot of people don't have phone service, either. It's so wild that one day of rampant nature can do so much to disrupt our lives.... and yet... it's so beautiful, don't you think? 



StarletStarlet said...

My gosh what a beautiful place you guys live in.

The morning photo with the rain / snow is my favorite!

And sounds like a fun class at the nursery.

Stay warm, my friend!

Terriaw said...

Wow, what a weekend! Some of us were jealous of your snow storm. You captured the scenes beautifully! I love the irony and contrasts of the beautiful fall colors, covered in snow. Glad to hear you're safe and warm, and enjoyed a great day spent inside the greenhouse.

Brandi said...

Holy crap! That drive back must have been insane (but I get freaked out when I have to drive in bad weather)!! I'm so glad you both got back okay.

Did that tree hit your place, or was that your neighbor's house?

And yes, the juxtaposition between winter and autumn is so, so beautiful. Thank you for sharing it with us!

shari said...

@Starlet, yes, it's definitely beautiful here! Dramatic, right?

@Terri... well, if you guys get it, you'll be in for a real interesting storm! It was nuts!

@Brandi, yes, it was scary. I'm not confident driving in snow, so K did the driving, other than when I had to drive while he pushed the car out of the snow. Just glad I got some nice photos out of it, ha ha!

@Everyone, thank you for visiting me... I know I haven't been around as much. Just trying to get back into it again! xox

Orion Designs said...

Driving in the snow is never fun, but in a Mini it must be quite a ride. Glad you made it home safely!

LenoreNeverM♡re said...

I'm glad you guys are safe, Shari!
Winter wonderland huh?!

Fenny Setiawan said...

Agree with Starlet, what a beautiful place Shari. So blessed. And what a unique weather though. Love the snow scene, so inspiring photo. Also a bit intrigued with Bonsai class, I think is really a stress therapy class for me, feel want to attend those classes that makes me relax n happy.

shari said...

Thank you all... yes, safety is important! I also value getting a good story out of any difficult situation. It makes it funnier later!

@Fenny... you should try a bonsai class! It was a lot of fun! My next class is likely to be a ceramics class, or something like that. I love learning new things! I hope you're finding happiness and relaxation lately!

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