Groundhog Day is one of my favorite holidays. Maybe it's because I'm from PA, maybe it's because I love Bill Murray...I really can't explain my love for this holiday rationally except to say that the whole bit makes me giggle. I have never been able to take the holiday (or Phil's predictions) seriously, but I can never, ever stop celebrating it. Someday I will go to Punxy and behold the ridiculousness for myself, but in the meantime, year after year, I celebrate Phil's amazing weather predicting talents by making popcorn and watching Groundhog Day. Except...this year, the whole celebration wasn't really as fun. It turns out that the movie Groundhog Day is only super funny when you aren't writing the same thesis document in the same apartment EVERY SINGLE DAY. Watching that movie only intensified the massive case of cabin fever that has been suffocating me and my motivation over the last few weeks.
Lucky for me, a change of scenery was just a day away. Needing a change of pace (or at the very least, a new dining room table to write from), I packed up my laptop and flew to Pittsburgh on February 3 for a few days. And then a few more. 22 inches of snow fell on Butler in just 12 hours on Friday night! It was fantastic AND productive. As my parents and I waited for the snow plow to make its way up the scary brick hill that is Elm Street, we passed the time working (my mom grading papers, my dad solving some HSBC computer crisis, and me writing my thesis) from the dining room table with some cocoa.
Despite our inclination to get some work done, all that snow was really fun too. We have had snows here in Ithaca, but I have been so consumed with writing that I haven't really experienced them properly. (Most of the time I look up from the window and say, "Hey, it's crazy snowing outside!" and then get back to work.) 22 inches in one day demanded attention. Saturday afternoon was spent strategizing where exactly to put all of the snow from the sidewalk - my parents' front yard was not big enough to handle all of it. (Our solution: backing my mom's car out of the driveway and putting the excess snow there.) My dad and I built a massive snowman out of some of the leftovers, but the poor guy was quickly destroyed by our family dog when she decided it was a menace and attacked it. I also almost got buried trying to make a snow angel. (I wish I had pictures of all of this, but our camera battery has died, and I have no charger to charge it with.)
After failed attempts to fly back to Syracuse, I finally made it back to Ithaca on Sunday night. Unfortunately, I was too late for our Super Bowl party, but I was just in time to be happy to be back in the apartment. I even feel refreshed and ready to work again, though I can't promise this will last beyond the next few days!
And if one crazy snowstorm in PA wasn't enough, 18 more inches are expected to fall in over the next few days! I postponed my trip to Penn until next week so that I don't get snowed in twice in two weeks (good call too, since the university is now closed). Something tells me I am only allowed to have fun in the snow once during this whole thesis writing process. I will say this though - Phil sure has showed us the wrath of seeing his shadow this year, huh? Maybe next year when Phil predicts more winter, I'll take him more seriously.