Friday, December 10, 2010

This is not what I signed up for

neuer Freund, originally uploaded by ankonym.

Last February, flying into Dublin, the taxi driver was extremely excited to warn us, repeatedly, about the 3 millimeters of snow that were visible in dark corners of the Dublin cityscape. "It makes a crackling sound like GLASS when you step on it, be extra careful, love!"
Irish people were still in awe of that tiny bit of snow, newspapers printed snowball-making instructions, children maximise the snow output of any surface until they have cleared up the snowfall of an entire playground lawn to make a 30 cm snowman.

THIS is what I had in mind when I moved here.

Fast forward to this year: For two weeks now, Dublin is covered in 10 cm of thick ice. We have seen all variations of wintry weather - rain, hail, sleet, snow, rain that freezes over, snow that melts to freeze over again, and right now, thawing, which means added slipperiness with a bit of water on solid ice. Wheee! It's a wonder I've hardly seen any people with broken limps lately, for Irish people don't quite know what to do with this weather phenomenon. They do: de-ice cars with the help of hot water, and keep water running day and night to keep pipes from freezing and bursting. They do not: wear proper shoes, shovel snow, put gravel on unshovelled snow, have winter tyres on cars, have houses that are built as if we were in a climate zones that might get occasional winters.

So now, Dublin turns off water supplies 12 hours a day (night) because with all those open faucets, there's more water demand than supply. We don't have this issue: A plumber lately diagnosed a leak somewhere on the way to our apartment, only the landlord seems blissfully unconcerned with this, so that we haven't heard back from either of them since. Ireland, you fail at winter.

1 comment:

Imogen said...

Crikey - I thought we were handling it incompetently here in Britain!