Frost Heaves…

March 8, 2010 at 9:10 am | Posted in Around Boston | 9 Comments
Tags: , , , , , , ,

The other day, I was driving around my town (which I lovingly refer to as the black hole of winter) and saw a sign that gave me pause.

My town may be R-rated... frost heaves abound!

My town may be R-rated... frost heaves abound!

You see, I was born in Colorado and have been in New England for double digit years, so I regard myself as fairly familiar with winter and the required frosty vocabulary. I can tell you exactly what white outs, black ice and no salt zones are. But I have never, in my nearly three decades of winters, seen a warning for “frost heaves.”

As you can probably guess, my imagination started going and before I knew it, I started picturing an illicit affair between a snow drift and a slippery sidewalk. As the tension grows between the two (who are unable to get a moment alone away from the prying eyes of the roof’s icicles and the roadway’s black ice), the sidewalk’s frost heaves in anticipation as the wind pushes the snow drift closer and closer… nearly close enough to feel each other’s cool touch…

Okay, clearly I need to get out more (although I blame my bloggier half, April, who designates every February as romance novel month for our book club. I may never look at wheelchairs or cats the same way again! Don’t ask…).

Anyway, I did pull myself out of my natural wonders romance scenario long enough to get the facts. According to Wikipedia, “frost heave is the process by which the freezing of water-saturated soil causes the deformation and upward thrust of the ground surface.”

I get it, it makes sense, but I still think the term sounds better as a “romantical” innuendo.

Wishing you fulfilling frost heaves until spring comes to stay,



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  1. Funny, the romantical angle never occurred to me. I thought that sign had to do with vomit. That’s weird.

    • Hmmm… that IS weird. But I guess ambiguous signage is like a window into our souls. Vomit v. romance… We’re quite the odd couple!

  2. I always thought the sign means that if you drive over said heaves too fast, you will vomit from the bumps caused by frost.

    • Hahahaha, oh, poppa! 🙂

  3. If I had seen that sign while driving I would have slowed down and drove cautiously to make sure I did not skid on any piles of frosty cold puke. Sounds delightful!

    Well at least I learned the meaning of some new signage in case I come across it! Hmmm….I wonder why ryhmes with moss didn’t see the educational side of this blog?

    • Indeed I did slow down and drive cautiously (as I made Andrew take the picture!).

      Rhymes-With-Moss clearly has trouble identifying learning opportunities for his staff. Perhaps we should come in and teach a seminar 😉

  4. ha! i would have to agree with April…that was my first impression too…a not so pretty one. Reminding me of a very frosty night in Botswana, Africa many years ago when i had the heaves and could not stay warm in my sleeping bag…thank you for bringing back such wonderful memories. 😉 I actually have an even more random sign to share that i think you ladies would appreciate…but i have to get a picture of it first. I’ll post it for you soon!

    • Keep us posted, Bonnie… and consider me intrigued!

  5. ok, i just posted an entry on my blog with my own random signage…i think you both will appreciate this! 🙂

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