great googly moogly!

And, it's supposed to keep snowing all day today.
[click for larger]

Update: Forecast is for continued snow thru Saturday night. Eeeesh.


Old Snow

Before the next storm hits, a few things to wrap up the last one.

On Friday morning, this was the roof of the Golf:

MB at Reference had some notes on the storm. Be sure to check out the photo of St. Francis of the Prairie Dogs.

There you go.

Forecasters are calling for a storm tonight in the area; most likely will be a dusting if anything. But there's a good essay at New West about why these predictions of little storms are such big deals. Unlike, say, DC, where a forecast of snow is a Cause For Panic, it's more like wishful thinking here — if we all believe in the weatherman, we'll get water.

happy birthday, Dori!

27 December



Today, after Panettone french toast for breakfast, headed up to Aspen Meadow, for another walk/hike. Looked a lot different than the last time we were up there. We were warm because of the sun, and because the trail goes pretty relentlessly up. Not too steep, though. Saw plenty of people on their way down: on snowshoes; on x-country skis; and, like us, on foot. Nice packed powder on the trail (a fire road, really), and at least a foot deep off the trail — you'd need skis or snowshoes there.

Back home to warm up, have snacks, tech support M+J's new, still-in-progress project for the Wethersfield Historical Society, leftover posole for dinner, more cookies for dessert. Oh, the COOKIES!



Christmas! Cookies, candy, dried fruit, clementines, lebkuchen, stollen, and cardamom sticky buns (I managed not to burn them this year) for breakfast. After opening presents...


... we went down to Cochiti Pueblo to watch the dances. Joa was already there, bundled up, sitting with her back up against a post, to get the full bass-in-your-chest effect from the drums. After a while Janie and Amelia showed up, and we watched three rounds of dances (there are two groups of drummers and dancers that alternate). Left cookies (from us) and maple syrup (from M+J) with them, before heading back. Posole for dinner. More cookies and candy for dessert.



Met up mid-morning at the Palace of the Governors. Stopped by the Print Shop and introduced M+J to James The Printer (who printed this year's cards for us), gave him some cookies, and continued on to the printing exhibit.

After lunch at Blue Corn, Marsha tried to S.K.I. (spend kid's inheritance) at some of the shops around the Plaza. Saw the flatbed trucks full of farolitos, staging for the evening's festivities.


We split up to get ready (read: put on warmer, yet dressier, clothes) for dinner at SantaCafé. Afterwards, went up to Canyon Road for the farolito walk. Didn't spend as long as we did last year — too dang cold!



A hike/walk Saturday afternoon to work off all that cheese. Back to the Dorothy Stewart trail, where we took Audrey a few weeks back. More snow than last time, a little slippery in parts. We, of course, left the hiking poles in Bram's car, back at the apartment. Nice views of the snow.


Whole Hog for dinner: ribs for Bram and Marsha; pulled pork for me and Jim.



[Yes, I'm backdating these, instead of doing one monster post.]

Meehans arrived safely in Albuquerque Thursday evening, although their luggage was delayed a few hours, due to American switching them to an earlier DFW-to-ABQ flight. They drove up to Santa Fe on Friday, and we all had cheese fondue at our place for dinner because, well, a) it's yummy, b) the Intertubes say we should, c) why the heck not? and, d) did I mention it's cheese?


okay, enough about the weather, already!

It continued to snow for the rest of the day yesterday. Around noon, I cleaned off my car and went for a little walk out the arroyo in back. Climbed up to get a better view. That's facing south, with the end of our two-tone apartment complex and the condos beyond in the middle ground.

Meanwhile, Bram borrowed the office digital camera, and took a bunch of shots of the "downtown" area, including this one of the Plaza.

Dusk, with the string of Christmas lights on our balcony railing making a neat snow lantern effect.

This morning: sunny. The Throckmorton gauge, and the same view from the balcony as yesterday (note the now-visible mountains in the background).

Total damage: 6 to 10 inches in town, 38 inches up at the Santa Fe ski area. I-25 between the Raton Pass and the Colorado border has now reopened.



It did snow overnight. As of 9:45 am (Mountain Standard Time), the view from our balcony, and the Throckmorton gauge is completely covered.



So, as early as Friday, then, there was buzz about the big storm coming this way. The one that hit the Pacific Northwest so hard. By Monday morning, there was already a Winter Storm Warning starting that night at 5:00 and continuing on until 5:00 Wednesday morning.

Following weather.com during the day, they had a 50% chance of snow by around 5:00 and 100% by 4:00 Tuesday morning. Around noon, a snow storm kicked up, raising alarms and hopes. Then it went away. Continued gray and overcast, but none of the promised precipitation.

So the mini saber tournament at NMFF moved ahead. It's my regular fencing night, so I figured I'd join in, despite not having done electric saber except for that one demo about 8 or 9 years ago and never having had a lesson. A few of the kids competing also had no real experience either. There were a few experienced saber fencers plus the coach also, for a total of eight. We did a round robin to seed, then a direct elimination. I finished last, despite having won two in the round robin. The wrong two, I guess.

(Neither of those is me; I was photographing)

It was a good time and a good workout. And when it wrapped up around 9:30, there was no snow.

When I woke up at 5:30 and had to know, there was no snow.

And when we got up in the morning, still no snow, just gray and cloudy. But the radio news insisted it was going to snow later, maybe 4-8" even. But the afternoon came with just low clouds over the mountains.

So the snow watch continued, but I was despairing, feeling lied to. News came in that Albuquerque was getting snow. At one point, a co-worker's desktop weather.com said it was snowing outside, but we could see otherwise.

Then at 4:00 it started. Pretty hard. By 6:00 or so it had tapered off. Now weather.com says it'll clear up tonight and be 50ยบ tomorrow and our local TV station is saying that we'll get hit some more before the day ends.

But for now:


Tree Decorating

Headed over to the relocated Delancey Street Foundation tree lot Friday evening and picked up a Douglas Fir. And last night, we invited Serena, Jett, and Will over to decorate.


Looking for space for that last ornament...

Even more ornaments arrived this year, bringing our tree closer to "Joan-ness." For the traditional tree decorating Mai Tais we skipped the mix and made our own based on the original Trader Vic's Mai Tai recipe. Worth the extra effort.

Happy Birthday, JRDR

17 December


happy (belated) birthday, Sherry!

First: I'm sorry I spaced.
Second: Waldack???

4 December 1958


Short Hike/Long Walk With Audrey

Started off the day with some errands, including getting the 7000 BC table set up at an art sale being held at Wise Fool.

Then, because we're dogsitting Audrey for the weekend — and it seemed a nice winter day — we decided on a bit of a hike. Over by Atalaya, near St. John's, is the Dorothy Stewart trail, which the Sierra Club guidebook describes as an easy, 3-mile hike. By the time we got there, the sky had clouded over and the wind picked up. However, it was still a nice hour out on a trail that winds through the hills and offers some great views of the snow-capped mountains and the town. Audrey seemed to enjoy herself, too.



Off to Hickory for the quarterly press check tomorrow.


as predicted

About 3 inches of snow overnight, looks like 2.5 or so on the Throckmorton gauge. Also, as promised, my arty snow-and-railing photo.



it's official

Received today: first Christmas card (from the Gardners); big box of lebkuchen from Oma (background):

winter weather advisory

Yes, everyone is all excited here about the possibility of snow. All week I've been at the NOAA weather site, watching the continent-size cloud from the northwest sweep our way. More interestingly, are the reports from some of the blogs I read: yesterday, from Vancouver; today from Utah. It looks like tomorrow, I'm going to have to find a snow-covered railing and post a photo of it.

(PS: If you're not already reading Dooce , you should. 20 million customers can't be wrong.)



So, no hike yesterday. Instead:

Village of Painters: Narrative Scrolls from West Bengal at the Museum of International Folk Art. The work of an Indian caste that traditionally created scrolls telling stories — mythological or historical — and went from town to town, singing the narrative as they unrolled the scroll to tell story. The simple style combines with vibrant colors to create some amazing compositions; and the whole approach resembles sequential art (or "comics").

Casino Royale. Not everything I wanted it to be, and certainly not without its faults, but I think it's the best Bond flick since Bond became Bond, 'round about From Russia With Love or Goldfinger.


Mole Day

Yesterday, headed to Sam and Kimmi's for Mole Day. Not familiar with Mole Day? Following, an excerpt from Sam's Mole Day manifesto:

And I thought, this year, if you like, we could invent our own holiday For example . . . Thanksgiving has a turkey . . . maybe we could have a mole as our holiday's mascot. Moles are cute and harmless. Why aren't they extinct? The other night Kimmi rescued a mole in our backyard. Homer, our cat, wanted to "play" with him until he was dead. I looked at the little mole and thought, "mole, you are so little and slump-shouldered, slow and you can't, it seems, defend yourself. Are you blind, too? Jiminy crickets!" We could celebrate the mole. For its dumb luck and reproductive capabilities. Happy Mole Day! We could make our traditional mole t-shirt,* recreating the honored tradition of "drawing the mole," a tradition done every Mole Day morning, after the first cup of tea or joe. Cap'n Crunch Cereal with Crunchberries could be the traditional breakfast for Mole Day — just a suggestion. And so on.

So, late afternoon we headed on over. Eventually we were joined by two other couples (Cassidy and Zoe, Ryan and Seren) and sat down to the giant pot-luck dinner, which included: sushi, frittata, ceviche, the aforementioned ropa vieja with rice, mashed potatoes, cheese and crackers, and other crunchy, salty snacks. And later, dessert was pumpkin mousse with Cointreau cookies.

We were also treated to a surprise dish, from Sam's childhood in Georgia:


That's iceberg lettuce, with a dollop of mayonnaise, a canned pear half, cheddar cheese, and a cherry on top. After much discussion of what it is called, and what it should be called, we settled on Brendetta — combining Sam's mom's name with vendetta to add that connotation of danger.

The traditional mole day drawings were displayed on the refrigerator.

Making use of the resources of Sam's new pottery studio in the garage, there was also the sculpting of artwork — some of it mole-ish — to be fired this week. There are no photos, sadly, due to the other Mole Day tradition of getting the guys who have never played Xbox and putting controllers in their hand and having them run into walls instead of shooting the monsters like they're supposed to.

Mole Day wrapped up early in the evening, so we continued on to Stacy and Jim's. Their Thanksgiving involves all sorts of special treats from Stacy's job as head chef at a catering company. We arrived after they had finished dinner (but in time to pick at the leftover turkey) and joined the group for some wonderful desserts.

The day-after-Thanksgiving hike has been called due to gray, overcast skies and lingering cough.

* The making of the traditional t-shirt was subsequently rejected as way, way too much effort.