Column: Prepping for a blizzard

UConn students frolic in the snow on campus on Feb. 5, 2016. (Jason Jiang/The Daily Campus)

Blizzards are both amazing and inconvenient. The truth of the matter is that, overall, a snowstorm is sometimes a student’s dream.  In and of themselves, blizzards can be dangerous, but also a time for people to get out and enjoy Mother Nature.  To maximize enjoyment, consider how the best snowstorms are the ones you are prepared for. 

Invest a little time in planning your activities. What makes a storm awful is how we let it affect us – and it will never be the snow’s fault you are stressed.  However, your preparation should be based around your comfort. Make sure you’ve got a shovel, whether it’s your own or you are borrowing someone else’s.

Route 195 is just about the worst place to be in the mornings following a blizzard, so set an alarm that makes you get up earlier than normal. This mostly applies to off-campus students who have the most to contend with during a blizzard, but nonetheless, allow for time to wake up, make a cup of coffee, even shower.

All of those aforementioned activities are part of anyone’s morning routine, so it’s important to keep to that routine even if it means getting up a littler earlier. This is all in the name of being able to calmly and comfortably get yourself up without feeling rushed. If you can get to class with all of those things in order, you are winning.

Think about the other comfort a blizzard might bring. Who doesn’t enjoy binging on Netflix, video games or, most importantly, completing classwork? If you’ve got the space for it, you can even pick up some firewood from vendors like Stop and Shop or other retail markets if you want to have that quintessential blizzard evening in front of the fireplace. Dorm life robs students of the comfort, but if you find yourself with access to such a luxury, consider yourself lucky.

Grocery stores are essential, but having worked in one for seven years, I am confident in saying the panic often experienced during these times is completely irrational. There is no doubt that things can go from bad to worse in a blizzard, so it’s important to have the essentials, but the truth of the matter is everyone knows that snow is almost guaranteed to fall every winter. Don’t wait until the day before the storm to buy everything.  The only thing to worry about should be how much hot cocoa you want. Shopping in a panic leads to people overbuying, and students are broke enough as it is.

The key to preparation is doing what you need to do in order to be comfortable while the inches pile on. Chances are that you and everyone else aren’t really going anywhere during the storm, so be sure get out into the world before people storm the grocery stores with panic and disarray.

Start your preparations now, because you never know when the next snowstorm is going to roll in.


Matthew Gilbert is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at matthew.gilbert@uconn.edu.