Well, there isn't much to tell at the moment. I had a party on Friday night for 41 of my closest and dearest friends - including quite a few sweeties from this forum ( and some gnarled 'lurkers' ). Then I washed dishes and wine glasses for most of the weekend ... when I wasn't clearing snow.
Patty Brown stood yesterday on tiny Wroxeter Avenue, near Pape and Danforth avenues, chipping away at a snowbank that, somewhere below, contained the genealogistâ€™s Honda Civic. She offered her theory about all this snow.
â€œThis was a Toronto winter from the 1960s or â€™70s,â€ she says. â€œYou know what? I think global warming has stopped. We unscrewed a few too many light bulbs, and this is what we got.â€
Riverdale, which got 30 centimetres of the white stuff blanketing narrow streets that residents use to park, had a tougher job than other parts of town to dig out from Sundayâ€™s storm.
In about 10 minutes Ms. Brown and I had dug out her car; we moved the snow across the street to a snowbank lining the sidewalk, already shoulder-high. I would have just tossed the snow to one side, where a parked car had been, but people around here are conscientious â€” there is very little parking and ridiculous amounts of snow.
Some resent the cityâ€™s plan to let Mother Nature melt the snow rather than cart it away, but Ms. Brown says city service has improved. â€œIn years gone by our street would go through the entire winter without being ploughed,â€ she says. â€œThis year they ploughed right away.â€
The snow appears to have reawakened Torontoniansâ€™ Canadian pride, with people bragging about their elbow grease, ingenuity, neighbourly instincts and array of snow-assault implements.
â€œA young couple have come out here to help clean,â€ says Lynne Gilmore, hefting her shovel and ice chopper to surgically carve a path for melting snow to flow from the streetâ€™s crest to the gutter. After 50 years here, she is a practised snow engineer. She is â€œnearing 70â€ but clearly does not need my help.
Peter Noehammer, director of transportation at the City of Toronto, east district, says, â€œWeâ€™re going to do some limited snow removal where itâ€™s affecting safety, such as sidewalks on major routes where high piles of snow are affecting sight lines.
â€œMost of the side streets are in really good shape now,â€ he says. Asked about those struggling to get their cars out or to park them, he says, â€œWeâ€™re hoping that the warming trend will deal with some of that frustration.â€ Forecasters predict 3C today. To help the melting, the city has dumped about 10,000 tonnes of salt.
The Toronto Transit Commission limped along yesterday, shutting down the Bloor-Danforth subway line between Victoria Park and Kennedy stations for much of yesterday after snow turned to ice and froze the third rail that provides power. That section of the subway is above ground.
On Dundas Street at Ossington Avenue, I saw three streetcars stuck in a row; a van had parked alongside a copious snowbank and the streetcars couldnâ€™t pass him.
â€œPeople seem to think their need to park and get a latte goes over our need to go by,â€ says Marilyn Bolton, a TTC spokeswoman. â€œAnd our vehicles are pretty full these days because a lot of people havenâ€™t dug their cars out yet.â€
In Riverdale, Vicki Mills, wife of former MP Dennis Mills, complains that, â€œKids should be out getting some exercise and earning some money shovelling the snow.â€ Ms. Mills shovels her own snow but adds, â€œIf you have a neighbour thatâ€™s elderly, go shovel for the goodness of your soul.â€
Later I take my shovel to Lynwood Avenue at Poplar Plains Road in Forest Hill, where Kathy Peel does not need me; she is putting finishing touches on a stellar job her husband, Ken Peel, and two teen sons did on the semi-circular driveway of their home.
â€œNature always bats last,â€ Ms. Peel says. â€œThis is one of those moments when everything slows down. Itâ€™s healthy to do something physical and quite mindless.â€
Please clean up the sidewalk in front of your home. There are so many parents with strollers and small kids that are still having a hard time getting through the thick slush. I'm amazed how many uncleared sidewalks there are in Riverdale. Maybe those folks went south for Christmas.
I have to agree so many people just think if it doesn't affect them, it affects no one. my poor wife and son have been stuck inside for days, you couldn't get a stroller down the majority of streets due to uncleared snow. They really have to start enforcing it, but I find the city to be one of the worst culprits, most sites have a skinny little path that hasn't even gotten down to the pavement. Hopefully the warmer weather will help, they are seriously getting cabin fever!
On my street - home of the stars - it's usualy the people in the big houses who do the worst job of clearing away the snow. My nice new neighbour has cleared the sidewalk outside the Winter Palace twice so far, bless him.
I'm guessing by that description your in the broadview/danforth > logan danforth area? My parents are across from Withrow park and say the same about 2 neighbours, they just jump in the car and reverse over the snow covered walk. again if it doesn't affect them, it's not a problem.
Just this morning I almost killed myself when the neighbour down the street didn't salt or clear his walk of ice. luckily there was a nice pile of snow on the edge of the curb to save me from breaking a hip.
When the blue-grey box / green bin trucks drove down my street on Wednesday they forced much of the snow, piled at the curb, back onto the sidewalk. When the City ploughs the streets the same thing happens. Fortunately, the snow is melting quickly so I'll not bother shovelling it back off the sidewalk.