Cloverdale was blanketed with snow yesterday as a strong low pressure system moved in from the Sea of Sorrows. Walking down the High Street was especially treacherous. Several slips and falls were called in to the local emergency services. By 10:00 A.M. the ambulance was going out on regular calls. By 11:00 A.M. the village clinic was overwhelmed with several broken arms and sprains.
At Noon Cloverdale Weekend Television broadcast a public service announcement asking village residents not to venture outside unless it was necessary. The announcer asked those with snowmobiles to help with the collection of fallen residents. Minutes later several snowmobiles were heard moving through the village’s roads and lanes transporting the injured, lame and bleeding to the clinic.
The Mayor ordered the school’s closed right after lunch. Although his intentions were good, the resulting chaos was unforeseen. The village’s school buses were ill equipped to navigate deep snow and ice. The primary student’s bus from St. Bartholomew’s Catholic School slid off Clover Lane and into a large snow drift before making its first drop off. The students were ecstatic when they were told snowmobiles would cart them the rest of the way home.
The public school buses fared no better. One slid on icy pavement into a telephone pole. Several students were treated for bloody noses while they waited for another bus to take them the rest of the way home. Several local residents braved the high snow drifts to bring warm drinks and cookies to the stranded children. Eighty five year old Dana Cooper "The Conjurer", entertained them with magic tricks from the days when he performed on a regular basis at the Grand Theater in the 1950's. The children were delighted. Dana glowed from the attention and told the bus driver that the children's warm reception made him realize how much he missed the stage. His 92 year old agent announced this morning from the Nearly There Home for the Elderly and Senile that Dana Cooper is thinking of a come back tour of the local schools and senior citizen centers.
Snow continued to fall well into the early hours of the night. Highway One to Dibley in the Downs was closed after reports of a large snowfall near the Dibley turnoff. The Coastal Express arrived at the train station 45 minutes late. The conductor received reports that the tracks ahead were snow covered and impassable. Over 120 passengers were left stranded. Many found accommodations in the village’s motels and guest houses. Others found rooms at the Kicking Donkey and Hairy Lemon Pubs. Still others found refuge in the Saved by Grace Lutheran Church’s Social Hall.
Today started with brilliant sunshine and warmer temperatures. It appears the worst is passed. The village will return to normal as soon as the snow plow is pulled from the mammoth snow drift on Elm Street.