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Posted at 7:42 AM ET, 02/17/2010

No snowplow? No problem.

By washingtonpost.com editors

By Jim Biggar
Herndon

Winter storms in my Falls Church boyhood neighborhood meant day-long shoveling parties in the 1950s. There were even rules of etiquette: first shovel your sidewalk, then tackle the street. It was bad form to shovel your own driveway before the street was clear.

My wife, neighbors and I shoveled our way out of Pommeroy Drive in Fairfax’s Kings Park West after a heavy snow fell in 1979, and two days later trudged through knee-high snow to the local grocery store a half mile away. I think the plow showed up on day three.

We moved to Herndon in 1980 and found that the do-it-yourself spirit was alive and well there, too. Why plow? As long as the cows got fed and watered, things were just dandy.

The mechanical snow plow is a great invention, and I cheer when one appears on my snowy street. But it is a luxury. We once survived without it and many rural folks do so today. There are plenty of places where people still grab a shovel and have at it when the flakes stop flying; it’s cheap, it’s green and it works.

Shoveling snow is a loathsome task, but if it really needs to be done, just remember: “When you need a hand, first look on the end of your arm.”

By washingtonpost.com editors  | February 17, 2010; 7:42 AM ET
Categories:  Fairfax County, Virginia, weather  
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Comments

I live in Herndon Va and Miami Fl. I was in Virginia for the recent snow storm which I throughly enjoyed. It was beautiful and I did not mind the unplowed roads as I knew it would all go away soon.
The complaing and criticism in the Post from residents was unbeliveable. So what, you have to shovel your driveway?
Go to Hati and see what real suffering is.
People in this country are so spoiled. We have ecverything in abundance and the freedom to complain if it is not enough. I see people coming to America every day risking their lives to have what we have.
Grab a shovel and be happy you are here with electricity, plumbing and water.
Half the world does not have these luxeries we take for granted.

Kathryn Johnson
2426 Oakhampton Herndon, Va 20171

Posted by: johnsonkathryn | February 18, 2010 9:46 AM | Report abuse

I wish someone would investigate why Glover Park was never plowed. We still have cars and sidewalks buried by snow. We have gone 3 weeks without any Metro transportation (D2) from 33rd St & Q to 37th St & until Thursday morning. I just seems like if you don’t live directly on Wisconsin Ave – there really isn’t a need to clean your roads. Fenty should really be ashamed and not expect any help from us on his re-election.

Posted by: partyalamona1 | February 22, 2010 7:27 AM | Report abuse

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