Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The slow thaw

It is starting to actually thaw out a bit in Finland.  However, when it gets a bit warmer and the snow starts to melt, overnight chilling creates major ice and heavy packed snow.  The ground is definitely a bit slippery now and one must look out for falling ice/snow chunks in downtown Helsinki.  That might sound a bit strange to someone from sunny California as myself, but you must literally take caution this time of year when walking downtown.  Just last week a lady was killed in Helsinki when a falling ice piece fell from the roof on her head, so this is definitely a serious matter.  They do have people assigned to remove heavy packed snow and ice from the buildings, but accidents do occasionally occur.  Also, precautions should definitely be taken when walking around the iced over sidewalks this time of year.  It feels to me sometimes like I am walking on an ice skating rink when just passing over the sidewalks.

This was the 3rd winter in a row that they received major snow in the Helsinki/Espoo metropolitan area.  It makes for an awesome winter wonderland and the kids love it, but it also creates much snow removal work.  We are currently renting a house that contains a flat roof and snow must be removed in order to keep the roof, chimney and gutters in decent condition.  I spent roughly 2-3 hours clearing most of the snow from the roof.  Not exactly fun work, but great exercise!

March is just around the corner, meaning that Spring is almost here.  We could potentially have two more months of snow, but it really just depends on the weather patterns for this year.  When it gets even a bit warmer the grounds are just going to be covered in slushy snow, water and ice.  I guess I can say that almost survived my first winter in Finland.  :)


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