Sunday, March 02, 2008

Laguna Vista, Five O'Clock Somewhere cabin in the snow

Some people think that New Mexico is a desert. Right, so what's all this white stuff doing here? And this was after several days of melting and compaction.

Toward the right can be seen an area where I cleared snow off a portion of the roof. On this north side, snow was eighteen to twenty-four inches deep, even after evaporating and compacting for several days after the last snowstorm. On the porch, snow was piled up thirty inches high. By contrast, snow was only about eight inches deep at most on the south side of the roof, with a third of that side completely clear. On the ground, snow was about sixteen inches deep in most places, deeper in some shady spots. The snow had probably compacted to about half its original depth.

Door to exterior closet for water heater; some stains can be made out where water flowed out after the water heater burst. Our damage from the extreme winter storms was small, nonetheless compared to what was suffered by others in the area, with roofs collapsing at the only local grocery store, a church, several houses, and many sheds, barns, porches, and outbuildings.

Other updates from the neighborhood: Chama is still without a grocery store. After much of the roof caved in (one of several buildings to suffer that catastrophe), the owners are waiting for federal disaster response. Given the inefficiency and inertia of agencies such as FEMA, they and other locals who suffered from building collapses may have a long wait. It's too bad that Chama couldn't have gotten disaster relief from a more competent and compassionate relief organization such as the Hell's Angels. In the meantime, aside from some very limited groceries available at the Family Dollar, Sundial convenience store, and Cooks and Books in Chama, or Henry's in Tierra Amarilla, residents have to travel about 25 miles to Dulce (capitol of the Jicarilla Apache nation), 50 miles to Pagosa Springs, or 80 miles to Espanola to get groceries and most provisions.


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