I am not a fan of winter. Especially the winter of 2022. These huge temperature swings drive me crazy. One day we get a foot of white, fluffy snow that's easy to move and another day we get a snow, rain and sleet mix that hardens like concrete.

I went out on Saturday morning after the nasty mix of everything to clean up what the plow left behind at the end of the driveway and to dig out my mailbox.

Jeff Parsons
Jeff Parsons

You probably noticed if you had to clear the remnants of this last storm that a shovel wasn't going to cut it. Even a snowblower would have a hard time chewing through this concrete.

After 30 minutes of using the shovel like an ice chipper trying to break up the snow into something I could scoop up, a truck with a plow attached to the front end pulled up next to the mailbox. A man stepped out and asked if I'd mind if he cleared this out for me. "I saw you struggling with this," he said. "There's no way you're getting through that. It's like concrete."

I said that I would love it if he cleared it out and before I could even ask how much it would cost, he said "No charge. Just neighbors helping neighbors," and hopped in the truck and not only took care of the concrete-like snow at the end of the driveway, he cleared the whole driveway as well as the mailbox.

Jeff Parsons
Jeff Parsons

When he was all done, I walked up to him in the truck. "You're sure I can't give you something?" I asked. He still refused. I asked what his name was and he said Bill...Billy." He gave me his last name too, but of course I've forgotten it by now.

I thanked Billy profusely as he drove away, walking down my driveway admiring the work that took him only a few minutes, opposed to the hours of work it would have taken me to clear it.

So consider this a public thank you Billy. Your generosity is why, despite my dread of winter, I've lived here in Maine all my life. It's the people. You said it best. "Neighbors helping neighbors." That's the perfect definition of Maine.

So if you know a Billy from Windham who does plowing, tell him I said thanks again. He made my day.

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