Sunday, April 17, 2011

O is for "Only in Canada, You Say? Pity."

How is everything down south?
Enjoying your cherry blossoms and your golf courses?
Your gardens and your beaches?
This is how I spent my Sunday - outside with the family splitting wood, in a freakin' SNOWSTORM.
Yup, we Canadians are always trying to convince the rest of the world we don't live in igloos but then a snowstorm blows through town on the 17th of April and, well, all we can do is slit our wrists.
The funny thing is, winter's not done with us yet. It's been known to snow on Canada's first long weekend of summer, lovingly known around here as "May Two-Four" because it happens annually around the 24th of May, and because it's the Canadian way of saying "case of beer."
"Only in Canada, you say? Pity."
That expression, by the way, is as Canadian as a case of beer thanks to Red Rose Tea's marketing department. For years Red Rose ran TV commercials in which stodgy British upper class types tasted the tea and loved it, only to discover Red Rose was only available in Canada.
"Pity," they would say.
Yeah, yeah, it doesn't mean anything to you if you're from the land of cherry blossoms and sunshine. Here in the great white north, a cuppa tea is just the ticket when April showers are more like April blizzards.
By the way, this particular snowstorm is Dave's fault because he took the snow tires off on Friday.
That's how things work in the land of Red Rose and wood splitters. Pity, eh?
Angus is thrilled to help pile wood.
Thrilled. You can see it in his face.

Sam doesn't normally have white hair.
Look how happy he is to be involved in our family activities.

This is how much wood I've split in the last week.
Tin sign from the 1950s.
And the TV commercial: If you don't remember this, you're definitely not from Canada.


  1. Oh, so sorry about the cold up there! Warm and cozy hugs to you, Dave, and the boys. <3

  2. Yep.....Southwestern Ontario got it too...all day on and off, snow and sleet, sleet and snow. Fortunately it didn't stick around. What fun!

  3. Wow. I hope you had the tea on and a pot of soup cooking on the stove. Hope you thaw out soon.

    Pamela Jo

  4. Dang. If it's any consolation, I'm in Colorado, and last summer we got snow in July (actually right on July 4th. A literal damper on our BBQ plans.) Stay warm!

  5. I can't believe that wood pile for this time of year. I actually have a woodstove that I use for heat in the winter, which according to most calendars is over! C'mon down here and I'll pour you a glass of iced tea!

  6. I feel awful poking fun at the "land of cherry blossoms" having heard the news about the terrible tornadoes hitting North Carolina. I'd rather have a bit of snow than a tornado any day. My best wishes to all the writers I know in that area, as well as everyone dealing with the deadly aftermath.

  7. Mickey - you got snow in July? Why is it Mother Nature thinks long weekends should be snowed upon? Do you think she has summer barbecues confused with Christmas?
    Harry - we try and get all our woodsplitting done before bug season starts. There is a very small window of weather between snow and bugs so we try to do it then. The only thing worse than doing wood is doing wood while swatting bugs.
    Thanks for the warm wishes everyone and sorry about the snow in southwestern Ontario... every time I drive through London there's a blizzard, I swear, even in August.

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  9. Poor you, with all that snow!
    Here in my part of the UK we are basking in bright sunny weather and a balmy (almost unheard of at this time of year) 18deg.C (65deg. F)!

    Spring seems to have sprung suddenly - but the blossoms are already begining to fade as we seem to be catapulted towards an early Summer.

    Of course, it will all end in tears - we'll probably have frosts in May and rain until September :-(

    Oooh! Like the sound of the tea - but my preferred brew is 'Yorkshire' tea - good 'n' strong!

    I wonder what you have planned for 'P'? ;-)

    SueH I refuse to go quietly!

  10. Oh Sue, enjoy your warm weather! And have some of that nice Yorkshire tea for me!

  11. Red Rose Tea ads. Man, you keep bringing back all these memories. I hope your snow is short lived. We're just getting rid of the last of ours now. That, by the way, is a great photo of you sitting outside in a snowstorm, surrounded by junks of wood. Beauty, eh.

  12. Laurita - it was just flakes of snow, gentle, when we decided to go outside and split wood. Then it hit us like the white hounds of hades so I told Sam, go get the camera.. we need a picture of this bit of insanity. Yeah, we had just gotten rid of most of the snowbanks when this arrived.

  13. we got the same snow in niagara yesterday! I didn't dare go out in in though so kudos for actually getting some work done

  14. I'll trade ya. I'm sweltering at 90F.

  15. Well, that sucks. It is about 50 here today. I'd definitely trade Laura.

    I'd love to visit Canada. In July.

  16. Are you kidding me!? I'm sitting here shirtless sweating. Sweating! Gimmie that snow!

  17. May I just say, I am very impressed by the amount of wood you have there. I would love to have that much wood stacked out by our shed. We downed a few trees this week (no splitting yet), but we have nothing on you.
    Taking the snow tires off is a sure way to guarantee snow. I told my husband not to put the snowblower away b/c he'd bring on another storm.
    Stay toasty up there.

  18. Our snow is finally melting and joining all the waters of the Assiniboine River...
    I am not sure whether to cheer because the snow is going or weep for those affected by all the flooding.
    Best to have a cup of tea and think on

  19. Although we're a tad south, we aren't doing much better this spring. I'm in western Wisconsin and experienced one or two days of early spring before winter started again and we'll get 5-8 inches of snow tomorrow.

    Makes us understand our place in this world, huh?

  20. That's quite a wood pile. You just knocked all my complaints about the rain, right out of my head. I am now so glad it's raining. Thanks for the change in perspective.

  21. That's a cool looking snowstorm. I reckon the wood splitting alone would keep you warm.

  22. We are looking for any form of moisture we can get here in OKie. We're suffering from the worst drought in years (since the 1920s)... I would happily take snow :-)


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