Hillsdale, New Jersey

I will never forget that blizzard. I was a sophomore architecture student at RISD at a class at the Bayard Ewing building when we saw flurries out the windows. I hadn't heard any weather reports about a storm coming so I didn't think much of it. My morning class ended and I went back to my dorm room at Farnam Hall (which I recently learned was supposed to be the most haunted building in Providence. Who knew? None of us at the time, hahah). My afternoon classes got cancelled as the snow fell fiercely out of nowhere. My clearest memories include the uprising to keep the "taproom" open—first priority. Then I found that there was a worn path from behind my dorm to the "packie" on Benefit Street. All forms of liquor were gone from there by the third day of the storm, and the owner was staying there so he wouldn't be looted. There was a great snow slope built at the bottom of College Hill (on top of cars) that people skied down or used refectory trays as sleds. Also at the bottom of the hill were trucks that were abandoned and looted—especially the beer truck (it didn't have a chance). I remember a day that the refectory ran out of food, so I ventured to the local McDonalds, also out of food, but on the way I saw a little silver ball in the snow. I tried to pick it up, but then realized it was the tip of a car antenna from the buried car that I was standing on. The National Guard had to helicopter fuel oil and food to us, as well as Caterpillar tractors to dig us out. I also remember almost being run over by those six-foot high wheels of the tractor while walking home from the taproom one night. Oddly, I don't remember being inconvenienced or in danger. I just remember it was so much fun and exciting. Ah, to be young again.

Received via email, November 6, 2014.

Warwick Ice Cream's Blizzard of '78 ice cream, 2019
Warwick Ice Cream released their nostalgic Blizzard of '78 flavor—"whole roasted almonds and chocolate chunks buried in coconut ice cream"—in 2019. (March 1, 2019).

Two other things I remember from the storm were that my RISD friend's twin brother came for a rare visit—they didn't get along at all. His twin was stuck in Providence with us for about a week, because nobody could get out. I thought they were going to kill each other. And there was a busload of RISD students on their way back from a Boston field trip. The students were stranded on I-95, and picked up by emergency services and placed somewhere nearby in Massachusetts. All except my friend's boyfriend who braved the blizzard and walked back to Providence to be with her. I wouldn't have believed it if I didn't see him the next day. Ah, young love. Nothing can stop it.

Received via email, December 10, 2014.

Sun, 02/05/2023 - 22:37