Most people look forward to sleeping in on Saturdays for a change in routine from their work week. We work most Saturdays because we are part owners in a Used Car Sales and Service business.
Saturdays are usually busy at the shop but the morning after a snow storm, busy takes on a whole different meaning. This morning our car lot looked like this when we arrived at work.
My tools for cleaning up the car lot are few but essential. I dress in warm clothes with boots, jacket, hat and several warm pairs of gloves. I also need a snow brush for sweeping the cars off before moving them to plow, a jump pack to start any cars that may have a dead battery, and lots of coffee. And no, we don’t have a McDonald’s in our small town of 400. I just recycle the cups when I buy coffee so my good cups can stay at home where they belong.
One of the things I like most about cleaning up the lot is the level of activity around town. Everyone is busy cleaning up, homes and businesses alike. This morning as I was clearing the lot I heard my first snowmobile in town. When we get a lot of snow it is not unusual to see large groups of snowmobiles drive through town on the snowmobile trails.
After I sweep off all the snow off the cars I retrieve all the keys for the cars and start each one and move them so I can remove the snow. No one likes to tramp through the snow to look at a vehicle covered in snow when they are shopping cars and we don’t have an inside showroom for our cars.
This is what the lot looks like after I’ve moved all the cars. Today wasn’t bad only two cars that wouldn’t start before moving them.
I move all the snow from the south end of the lot to the north end where we pile it up for the season. Sometimes we get too much snow and have to haul some away so we have enough room for more snow if we get some. After the lot is clear then I move all the cars back to their locations and put all their keys away and the bobcat away as well.
This morning it wasn’t too bad for working outside because the wind wasn’t blowing and I dressed warm enough. My work started at 8:00 this morning and it took until 1:15 to finish up. As I finished up and was getting ready to head home my husband said that we needed to go out on a tow call. This is what the lot looked like when I finished this morning.
We locked everything up at the shop and backed out the tow truck. It seems we needed to rescue a sheriff who had driven a rear wheel drive squad car down a very steep hill in the snow and got stuck at the bottom. We had the winch the car up the hill backwards to get it out. I don’t know what the sheriff was thinking driving down that hill. It wasn’t an emergency call, just follow-up on an investigation.
This is where the picture of the sheriff’s car being towed up the hill belongs but the sheriff didn’t take too kindly to me for wanting to take a picture of the event so you will have to settle for a picture of my favorite watering can outside my front door.
Keep warm, toasty and your cars on the road .
I don’t feel like a tow call out in the cold this evening.
I am finally warmed up and settled in with a good book!
December 4, 2010 at 11:35 pm
WOW! What an amazing post. My respect for you just shot up ten-fold.
December 4, 2010 at 11:40 pm
There is nothing too difficult about the work. I actually enjoy the time outside if the weather is deceit and not too cold. Any time away from the phones is a plus for me. Fresh air and sunshine are always good for the soul.
December 4, 2010 at 11:42 pm
How many months out of the year does it snow like this?
December 4, 2010 at 11:49 pm
We get snow as early as the end of October some years and as late as the first week in April. The norm is usually November through March. Trying to keep the cars cleaned off when we have snowstorms back to back is hard because when we are clearing snow other things need to wait to be finished.
December 4, 2010 at 11:52 pm
This sounds similar to the climate where my best friend lives up in Colbert, Washington. Some years are milder but some are so intense that the snow piles up on the sides of the road like a tunnel.
December 4, 2010 at 11:58 pm
We’ve had quite a few winters with not as much snow but last year it seemed we would just get cleared out from one snow and the flakes were already falling for the next. Southern Minnesota got a foot of snow last evening. We only got six inches. That was enough. I am thankful for the snow for those businesses that rely on it each year. It can be really hard on them if we don’t get much snow.
December 5, 2010 at 6:45 am
I have to agree with JoDee – I remember your post from November 30 and realize you and Dean truly are modern day pioneers! I could not do what you do! People say you adapt, but I say I would just roll over and freeze to death… I have lived about 93 percent of my entire life south of 31 degrees N to even think about what you guys are doing. Stay safe up there and as warm as you can.
December 5, 2010 at 9:13 am
Thanks Joe. I have to say that there are people everywhere that get up out of their beds every morning and do what is required of them regardless of the temperature. I think daily of the military guys and gals in Iraq and now Afghanistan. We have a military base forty miles from here where troops come to train for winter operations from all over the world. My brother spends time each year training at a base in California for desert operations. Especially before he was deployed to Iraq.
We do what we need to do each day.
December 5, 2010 at 11:38 pm
I know, and I feel for those gals & guys… I, too, went through all the schools you mentioned and more. I think the cold weather stuff just reinforced the reasons why I would have to remain a Southerner for the rest of my life. Is your brother still deployed? Or has he come home? I hope the latter. Please, give him my regards for his service
December 6, 2010 at 12:13 am
My brother John is home and is now in the Naval Reserve. He spent most of his time in Baghdad as a SeaBee building a hospital. He was deployed one week after his wedding. He’s is attending college for mechanical design. I’ll pass on your regards for his service. Thank you!
December 5, 2010 at 8:35 am
Your winter season sounds similar to ours…I think we’ve got the best snowplow guy around…he’s always got us dug out by 7 a.m. after a storm (our driveway is about a 1/4 mile long).
It’s a lot of work having your own business, isn’t it? I think I’d like the outside work too…I love to shovel (snow is great – not crazy about ice, though)!
December 5, 2010 at 9:35 am
I love our snowplow guy as well but he is close competition for my affection behind my garbage man. Every thing I take out Wednesday morning I never have to deal with again. It’s gone! I love that.
It is a lot of work having your own business. People don’t often see or think about the things that are done outside of the regular business hours. They think about what they think is the “good stuff” like being in charge which at times is not much fun. Being in charge requires responsibility and working when a job needs to be done even if its not at a convenient time.
I love shoveling as well.
December 6, 2010 at 3:39 am
Great work, Jeanne, wow – I’m so impressed! And I love the love and pride that goes into your work – that really is to be envied. What a special quality.
Keep warm xx
December 6, 2010 at 7:22 am
Thanks Sunshine. It’s a lot of work to try to keep things looking nice in the midst of trying to do business but I do love it. Jeanne