As I write this article, we’re experiencing the most significant snowfall of the season. My neighbors and I have been venturing out every few hours to clear sidewalks and driveways, trying to keep the ultimate task manageable. I’m looking out my window at young teens on ATVs racing down my icy street, slipping and sliding, and I can feel their excitement.
The big storm of the season is one they will tell their grandchildren about. They’ll reminisce about the nor’easter that dumped snow up to their waists and how they were so reckless on a machine that’s now obsolete. I know those stories. Like the big fish, the depth of the snow grows with time and telling. But I will swear that when I was a kid in the 1950s, enormous snowstorms were regular occurrences. They were some of the best days of my childhood. The neighborhood children gathered like a work crew to build igloos and forts. We dug trenches to wage snowball war and enjoyed the shot that killed us because we’d fall backwards on the soft, white carpet, then flap our wings to carve out angels. By the time my dad shoveled his car out, there was a mountain that my pals and I climbed, and once on top beat our chests like gorillas, whooping and hollering, the conquering heroes. My favorite part of the day was spent sledding down Dorrance Street or skating on the flats.
Snow days were lucrative for the older kids, independent businessmen walking the streets with shovels, offering themselves out for hire. But not before fetching ashes from the cellar to throw on the sidewalk or in front of the car. Lots of cars had trouble starting back then. Was it the cold or cheap batteries? Tires must not have been great either because guys put chains around them for traction. Maybe they just couldn’t afford better treads in my neighborhood.
In my memory, we played outside for hours, but I doubt it now. We eventually got tired and retreated into our warm homes, mom at the door to peel me out of my snowsuit and heavy boots. Mittens and hat were placed on the sizzling radiator to dry and I was given a bowl of hot chicken soup to warm my insides. The sweating kitchen window begged me to write my name and as my finger glided across the glass, I looked out at the softly falling snow and dreamed as I always do.
It really did snow more often back then, and it was colder. Some are happy about that, but I think there is a loss for children who need to stretch their muscles and their imaginations. Friends who’ve turned into snowbirds in their old age send messages about balmy weather, thinking that I’ll be jealous. I’m happy right where I am, watching the snow fall outside my window and remembering the happiest of childhoods.
Wyoming, West Wyoming, and Exeter residents are eligible for free food from the Al Beech Food Pantry from 2 to 4 p.m. every Wednesday at the Church of Christ Uniting, 786 W. Market St., Kingston. The food is available without proof of income, but proof of residency is required. This is drive through only. No walk ups. Remain in your car and food will be placed in your trunk only. Everyone is welcome.
Wyoming Library news
Wyoming Free Library is offering virtual storytime, including May the Force be With You Fridays with stories from “Star Wars” at 10 a.m., and Scooby Doo Saturdays at 7 p.m. Saturdays. On Monday, Feb. 8, storytime begins at 10 a.m., followed by the making a Valentine Candy dog at noon.
Adults can participate in a Zoom discussion of the popular Netflix show “Bridgerton” on Monday, Feb. 22.
Email the library at www.wyomingfreelibrary.com and keep up with all activities on the library Facebook page.
The library has suspended in-person services and resumed curbside pickup service only. Call to schedule pick up between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Monday through Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. You can return library materials in the outside book return. Materials will be quarantined for seven days. No fines will incur during quarantine. For information, call the library at 570-693-1364 to place a request or schedule a pickup.
Wyoming Borough sanitation bills have been mailed and are in face period until May 14. The price is $250. Late fee of $50 will be added as of May 15. A senior discount is in effect until May 14, with senior fee being $240. There are no exceptions. Vacant properties are not exempt from fees. Rental property owners, not tenants, are responsible for trash fees. Cash will not be accepted. Check or money orders should be made payable to Wyoming Borough Sanitation. Bills can be paid online at wyomingpa.org using credit card or e-check. A small transaction fee will apply.
County/municipal tax bills will be issued Feb. 16. The discount period ends April 15. Face period ends June 15 and penalty ends Dec. 31.
Exeter refuse stickers
Refuse stickers for Exeter are now available. The price for residents under 64 is $170 if purchased by Feb. 28. From March 1 to March 31, the price will be $200. For seniors who have reached 64 by March 31, 2021, the rebate price is $130 until Feb. 28 and then $150 from March 1 through March 31. Mail or place check or money order in the box marked refuse, taxes and zoning and a sticker will be mailed to you. Please include a self-addressed, stamped envelope, business size No. 10. Mailing address is 1101 Wyoming Ave., Exeter, PA 18643. There is no admittance to the borough building until further notice. Call 570-654-3001, ext. 2, with questions.
Bulk collection stickers are $35 per item. To purchase bulk stickers, contact the Exeter Borough refuse office at 570 654-3001, ext. 2. A bulk item includes small furniture, carpet, mattress or an appliance.
The borough building is closed to the public and open only to essential personnel until further notice. The borough will continue to serve the public needs for all police, fire and medical emergencies. Please dial 911 in the event of an emergency.
Payments can be dropped off at the secure payment box located at the entrance of the borough building outside for the following: trash, taxes, tickets, building permits and dumpster permits. Please call 570-654-3001 with any questions or visit the website at www.exeterborough.com.
West Wyoming Legion meeting
West Wyoming American Legion Post 904 will hold its monthly meeting at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 11, at West Wyoming Hose Company No. 1 on Shoemaker Avenue. Commander Jerome Domkowski urges all members to attend.
Barbara Bullions writes about Exeter, Wyoming and West Wyoming every week. To list an item, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 570-301-2185 by Monday.