We woke up Monday to a world of white. The snow had mostly stopped but the wind was still whipping it around some. Matt's work was cancelled and by noon, we all headed outside to shovel out. The city had already done a decent job of plowing and once we had shovelled, Matt drove down the street and reported that the main roads were down to bare pavement. We'd already cancelled lunch with Auntie Margaret, who lives in the boonies and so would have to wait for plows, but since the main roads were clear and Matt was off work, Carolyn and I decided to head to Webbs rather than wait for Tuesday, when Matt would now have to work and so Aaron would be stuck at his grandparents'. The roads were mostly clear, except for a patch just over the border in Massachusetts, and we made good time, getting to Webb's by 2:30. We spent hours roaming the aisles of the warehouse. There didn't seem to be as much on sale as last year but that could be just a warped memory. Regardless, we got lots of good deals and headed back home, stopping at Dave's for stuff to nuke at home for dinner. It was a fun day.
Tuesday started with breakfast with Cornelia. It never ceases to amaze me how Cornelia and I are always on the same page despite our limited contact. After that, the day was now free with the exception of Aaron's asthma appointment just before lunch, which we were all going to. Carolyn and I hit Job Lot, where I totally filled a cart (!) before meeting Aaron and Matt at the doctor's office. I sat in the waiting room happily knitting while they were with the doctor and then we all went out for lunch at The Crow's Nest, where I enjoyed my annual plate of fried belly clams. Yum! We stopped at one more Job Lot on the way home and then spent the afternoon relaxing. With the help of space bags for all my yarn, I started packing in the late afternoon. I expanded my big suitcase and borrowed a bigger carry on but was able to get everything packed, with my suitcase coming in just under 50 pounds after I removed some magazines. All in all, it had been a wonderful trip and I was ready to leave on Wednesday morning.
Carolyn had a hair appointment so would have to drop me much earlier than necessary so I called Janice and made arrangements for breakfast and an airport dump and drive. She also had an appointment but it cut a bit of time off my airport sitting and I got to chat with Janice during breakfast, which was nice. Then the sitting began. I started a new knitted hat with a complicated lace pattern so the time flew by. The first flight was uneventful but when we got to Chicago, the fun started. The flight was delayed and then delayed again. Flights were being cancelled left and right and a gate agent finally got on the intercom to tell us the scoop. There was a fog bank approaching Chicago so they were cancelling later flights because the visibility would be nil. They were also circling incoming flights and not letting them land. But for some reason, they were going to not only let our plane land but also take off. So off we flew, a couple of hours late but one of the lucky flights that made it out before the fog set in. I was so relieved when the wheels left the ground! After a quick stop at Trader Joe's for some salads, I arrived home just before 9:00, late but happy. It felt great to be home!
Thursday was unpacking and cleaning up from the cats' messes (6 cats in the house for a week always results in messes.) The weather was ridiculously warm (the same warmth that was causing fog problems I'm sure) so I ended up outside in a t-shirt hanging laundry and planting perennials and mums that were still in pots, figuring I had nothing to lose and some might actually survive. I even ate one of my salads outside and was perfectly comfortable. But as forecast, the sun went in, the wind changed direction and the temperature plummeted. Within hours, it was winter weather again. The rest of the day flew by and then it was Friday. Helen came over and we chatted and knitted all day. It was great to catch up. Not being into New Year's partying, I ate a nice supper and went to bed early because Saturday was a craft day at Mary's so I wanted to be fresh for that. I brought my calendar pages and a flash drive with all my scanned slides and my felted rug squares, which I'd started the night before. It was a fun day of comradery, crafting and yummy food. I went to bed that night wondering where break had gone. I had one day left to get ready for the return to work, which meant chores, chores and more chores.
Sunday was a clear, bright day so I spent all morning sitting and knitting in the sun. By now I'd started a 3rd post Christmas project - a lace scarf out of bamboo sock yarn. By the time I got up and got busy, I had a formidable list. I was downstairs changing cat boxes when the laundry went into spin cycle and water started backing up out of the floor drain. I went upstairs and brushed my teeth as a test and sure enough my toothpaste foam came up from the drain too. My main sewer line was completely blocked and it wasn't pretty. I went upstairs to see if it would go down in time, hoping it would so I could make it through until morning when I would call my plumber. But then the phone rang. It was Donna with a knitting question. When I mentioned my plumbing problem, she put her husband on the phone. Ed has all the tools and knowledge I lack. Long story short, he and Donna came over and he unclogged my sewer. It required pulling garden hoses out of the garage, running things down the pipe, snakes, plungers, you name it! But for the price of a pecan pie (to be baked and delivered next weekend) instead of the $150+ I'd have had to pay the plumber, I had use of my water again. When they left around supper time, I headed down to finish the laundry and get to work on the rest of my chores. At 11:00, most of them were done and I could be found working on calendar pages. That's the problem with doing work that late. You get a second wind and sleep becomes problematic. I finally went to bed near midnight, knowing I'd be tired the next day and wondering what happened to break. It went too quickly, leaving me with an unfinished to do list. As usual, Martin Luther King weekend will have to be productive and I may have to take another day to extend it. Why do I ever think I'll get anything done after I get back from RI?