Blizzard brings Burlington together

For me, soreness from shoveling wasnt the only lingering thought of the storm as life gradually returned to normal. What was most remarkable to me was the wave of neighborly actions that came along with the snow. Although Burlington is small, the city feeling of living here comes, in part, from not knowing those who live next door or down the street. But on Wednesday night last week, the small street I live on in the Old North End of Burlington was full of neighborly activity: the lending and borrowing of shovels, helping push the many cars getting stuck on the slippery roads, providing much needed extra man power to help neighbors shovel their driveway, and just the constant exchange of incredulity as people passed one another on the snow covered street. While the popularity of the county wide service, The Front Porch Forum, which connects neighbors via an email forum, shows an increased effort toward neighborliness, the online neighborhood chat is still a far cry from the face to face interactions experienced by many last week. Although many people were trapped and unable to drive home for hours, there were numerous sightings of cross country skiers and snowshoers on Church Street, and people sledding down Battery Street Hill: For some, the snowy world of Burlington became their playground. While the record snowfall may have cancelled the dinner plans of many couples, it helped to unite neighbors all over Burlington, brought others out to explore and make the best of the new wintry world outside, and for all will be a Valentines Day soon not forgotten.

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