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We were adjusting to what everyone is referring to as “the new normal” which for us, means we pretend that Sugar Hill Road dead ends just past our neighbor’s house. After all, we could take Maranville Road to Route 140 headed toward Route 103 or Route 140 straight into Wallingford village and Route 7.

Not so after this morning. The bridge by White Rocks Recreation, which is our way (and unless there’s something I’m missing) the only way from our neck of the woods into Wallingford without going a very roundabout route is no more — at least for while. The bridge is no longer safe and has been shut down to traffic in both directions.

This means a lot of things for us. A trip to the transfer station is now a trip down Route 103 and then back into Wallingford to drop off trash. The bus route for school normally travels that route and since school starts tomorrow — we really don’t know how they will do that except by splitting the route. A trip to Manchester (although we don’t go that often) now means driving either through Ludlow and Route 100 (assuming of course that the roadway is open, which I don’t know offhand since we’ve had no reason to travel that way in the past week) or traveling most of the way to Rutland and then traveling south. In any event, life has become that much more difficult.

Still, keeping it all in perspective, we are inconvenienced, not devastated — as so many here in Vermont were from the storm. Traveling around here has become much more deliberate and less casual — since most  trips involve a lot more driving than they used to involve.

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Here are some pictures from Wallingford Pond Road and Chapin Road in East Wallingford. These are two roads down the street from us.

Here are some more pictures taken today as we wandered around the hill. The devastation is incredible.

The folks at the National Weather Service are just plain old mean. They can predict the weather days in advance and they decide to put out a frost warning at 8:45 p.m. at night. No offense, but seriously folks didn’t you know while it was still daylight out that we “might” have gotten frost tonight? Couldn’t you have come clean with this information before I was all cozy inside and it was all pitch black outside?

Aaaarrrrggghhhhh!!

This afternoon we attended a party/fundraiser for our dear friend and neighbor, Tom French who suffered a stroke a few months ago. The party was a welcome back to Vermont party and a fundraiser to help offset some of his medical expenses.

All I can say is if I have 1/50th of the number of people that care about me as Tom had there today, I would consider myself a very, very, very lucky woman. It was pouring rain today yet the party held at the beautiful home of The Johnsons in Clarendon in their pavilion (which was absolutely gorgeous) had at least 500 people purchase tickets to attend. There were people everywhere and so many, many familiar faces.

The parking lot looked like we were at the fair or a concert with all the cars parked everywhere.

Tom was happily greeting all his well-wishers and was totally enjoying himself. It was so nice to see him back in his element. If love and well wishes could provide energy then Tom could have easily been propelled to the moon and back, many times over this afternoon.

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Photo: The Institute of Heraldry

“Godspeed” a word, a wish, a hope. It is a wish for a speedy, successful, safe journey. The phrase is used in the launching of naval vessels and during NASA space flights.

It is our wish for those Vermonters, 1210 in all, who will be deployed to Afghanistan for Task Force Phoenix. The task force is established to help train Afghan Army and Security Forces to combat terrorism within their borders. There are 33 troops deploying alone from Rutland and 4 from our own town. These are neighbors and friends, familiar faces as we go about our daily lives here in a small town in a small state, who will be conspicuously absent in the next year. We appreciate their dedication and their bravery. Their families will undoubtedly have a “blue” Christmas without them and all of our lives will be emptier without them.

All we can offer in return for their efforts is a promise that as a community, we will help their families where needed, keep them in our thoughts and prayers and hope, just a little, to temper the hole their absence will create in the lives of their families.  We wish them Godspeed, a safe and quick journey on their appointed tasks.

Evilwife on the move

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