Cape Cod Meets Super Blizzard Nemo

Snow on the front walk of the Palmer House

We survived Blizzard Nemo with a bit of damage to the trees, and Cape Cod survived too.

Snow on the front walk of the Palmer House
A snow-covered front walk.

When the snow started on Friday morning it was light at first and the flakes were very small. That is usually an indication that a significant storm is in the offing.  As the day progressed, the snow was mixed with rain and by evening we had near white-out conditions. Throughout the night the wind was blowing wildly. It was in the morning when the storm was tapering off, as we walked the property, that we saw how much damage had been done. Bill has called a man with a plow but it is doubtful that he will be here today.  Almost half of the homes in Falmouth are without power and we have had many calls from people who are looking for warm rooms. We wish that we could help but we are “Snowbound”.

Snow on the Cape Cod B&B sign
Snow on the B&B sign.

I grew up in Haverhill, Massachusetts which is a little over a hundred miles north of Falmouth. Our home was a beautiful per-revolutionary colonial, in the section of the town known as Rocks Village. The house was built on the banks of the Merrimack River in 1774. The village was just a few miles from John Greenleaf Whittier’s homestead. One of Whittier’s best known poems was “Snowbound”. It was written about a massive storm that hit New England when he was a boy in the early eighteen hundreds. In the poem he talks about the snow being so deep that it almost reached the second story windows of his home. They were safe and warm in the house but they could not get to the barn to feed the animals. They decided to dig a tunnel through the snow to  get to the barn. The poem tells about that project.

Snow covered tree at a Cape Cod B&B
Snow covered tree.

Thinking about that long past dilemma and how it was solved, helps to put our plight into perspective. The Whittiers did not have to think about air travel, automobiles, electricity, snow plows or oil deliveries. Our lives are very different in the twenty-first century. Cape Cod usually does not get much snow. In fact last year we had little more that just a few dustings. That is what we get used to. Most of the towns on the Cape do not have town plows. Those of you who are familiar with New England  winters know that the snow removal fleet is an important item on each town or city’s budget. Traditionally, on the Cape, we get so little snow that our towns call upon local private contractors to do the job when needed. This storm is living up to its billing. It is a very heavy wet snow. We have sustained a lot of damage to our trees and shrubs. Bill is outside with the snow-blower working on clearing the walkways. We have been in contact with a plowing service to have the lot cleared, however, he could not give us a time when he could get here. We have had many calls today from folks in town who do not have electricity and need a warm place to stay but we cannot take guests until the lot is clear.

We’ll be digging out, shoveling the steps and preparing warm breakfasts for our guests. It will be a wonderful winter wonderland for a while. We always enjoy the cozy fires when we have a good snowfall. We’ll have a warm fire waiting for you in the parlor and a truely romantic fire in the Harriet Beecher Stowe room, the Theodor Roosevelt room and the Emily Dickinson room.