Monthly Archives: January 2016

Wintry Tech Warrior

# Snow plow

Storm’s coming.    Which makes me think, it’s rather disheartening that in all of our meandering and staring out at the snow storms, why hasn’t anyone realized the vast potential in a snow crop?  Not to play in, but as water, tomorrow’s cash cow?   Surely, with all of our tech wizardry, there’s a snow innovation that encompasses sustainable, potable water?

I’m only asking, because winter in New England means paying attention to weather reports like other people watch the stock market.

It means being prepared at a moment’s notice to heed a weather alert, and most importantly to respect Mother Nature.  Because with all the discussions of global warming and green house effects, winter in New England still carries one helluva wallop!

If it doesn’t happen this week, then it happens the next, or the next.  The threat lingers into early Spring, and even then, there’s always the memory of such a snowstorm.  The kind of snowstorm that lasts for days and days, that cripples a city, closes her highways and shuts down its airports.  Travel isn’t simply dangerous, it’s damn near impossible.  From zero visibility and impassable roads, high winds and treacherous conditions, only a few special people venture outdoors to make a difference, we call them “Snow Warriors”.

Snow Warriors are folks who brave the elements of a winter storm, who work late into the night, overnight and into the wee hours of the morning, running on little sleep and the fumes of a hot coffee thermos; it’s their sheer determination of will that moves the proverbial mountain, also known as white gold, snow.

The Snow Warriors aren’t like the general populace, that is they don’t fear the snow, they love it!   But not the love of a child at play making snow angels and snowmen.  Their love is of having been put to the task, the purpose and desire to do their job and to do it well.  To make the roads safe for the rest of us, we passengers who travel and depend on the transportation of goods.  Hopefully it’s all over quickly, but snowflakes that fall listlessly sometimes seem endless.

To the person seated behind the steering wheel, it’s war.  Their snowplow mounted truck, excavator or a loader is the weapon that pushes and shoves, breaks down and must be repaired in unfathomable conditions of cold wet steel and bolts that must be sheered off.  All while the snow continues to pile in.

From the warmth of our homes we watch, sip hot cups of tea and complain.  As the snow continues to falls and we wonder how we’ll ever get to work and kids smile, hopeful for a Snow Day.  The snow warriors keep on pushing and shoving and piling the snow, be it light and fluffy or wet and heavy, pushing.  It never melts quick enough, and decisions of how to treat the road beneath their wheels, full salt on the asphalt surface or a mix of yesterday’s sand.  It depends on what Mother Nature plans to release next, those freezing temperatures that often follow snow.

The Snow Warrior mostly goes unnoticed, yet their job is crucial to keeping the highways opened, the streets clear and the roadways safe for emergency vehicles, because heart attacks do happen and life sustaining ambulances and paths are needed to our doors.

It’s an arduous task, this pushing of snow into huge mounds.  Surviving on catnaps, their eyes red from the white glisten of falling snow.

It goes on for hours; hours and hours of pushing and moving the swirling and drifting snow.   And the Snow Warrior’s concentration, just like his/her will stays focused to combat the white barrage of snow, and to not become mesmerized by the loveliness of crystal snowflakes that enthrall children and skiers alike.  But the endless clearing of parking lots, walkways, sidewalks and miles and miles of roadways is the Snow Warriors domain and the snow, an unwelcome intruder. He’s someone’s father, husband, uncle, brother and she’s a sister, a mother, a wife and someone waits at home, hoping for their safe return.

They’re risking their own safety to protect ours. And yet, they mostly go unknown and without thanks.  This storm, like all of the previous storms finds the Snow Warrior ready and plow-mounted forever forward, making their way so we can make our way, after the storm passes.  So, I’m giving thanks to the many men and women who fight snow and thinking…

Why hasn’t anyone realized the vast potential in Winter’s snow crop, as tomorrow’s cash cow?   With all of our tech wizardry, where’s our snow innovation when it comes to potable water?

 

 

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Filed under innovation, Snow