Last week, WBUR got in touch with Ray to talk about any concerns that Boston residents should have about restarting their cars after they've been left to sit under three feet of snow the entire winter. We wanted to find somebody who actually HAD a car buried in the snow to see just how long it would take to get free once the weather warmed up. Luckily, Emma Westling came to the rescue.
Emma lives in the Jamaica Plain neighborhood of Boston. It's a place where you're more likely to transport yourself on a fixie bicycle than you are in an automobile. Emma went to get her Legacy inspected in December. It failed emissions, so she parked it in front of the garage around the holidays, when there wasn't a flake of snow on the ground.
Then January came and it started snowing. And snowing. And snowing. Over the next six weeks, Boston would be buried under the deepest snowfall in the history of the city's record-keeping, and Emma's Subaru sat under a blanket over 110 inches deep.
What's made it worse over the last few weeks is that it got warm and rainy for a few days, and then Boston was hit with sub-freezing temperatures a week later. The other tenants in Emma's building had shoveled a space at the end of the driveway for their cars, leaving a Titanic-wrecking iceberg in front of Emma's. The once-fluffy snow surrounding the Legacy turned to about 18 inches of ice that can easily support the weight of a fat, bald automotive writer.
So here's the deal: We're taking bets on when Emma's car is going to make it out of the driveway.
She's going to take a picture every few days, and we'll post it up on the Car Talk Facebook page. Whoever comes closest to the actual date -- without going over -- is going to win some Car Talk Swag(TM), such as a pair of Ray's dirty mechanic's coveralls or a stack of customer lawsuits from Car Talk's garage in Our Fair City.
Enter our contest!
If you want to win a prize, e-mail us your best guess by Tuesday, March 24. (Include your name and mailing address in your guess, and if you feel like doing our web lackeys a favor, write "Spring Thaw" in the subject.) If you don't care about our lousy prizes, just post your guess in the comments! Keep watching the Facebook page for updates. We'll declare a winner when Emma manages to get the car out of the driveway and onto the street.
And here's Emma discussing just how this Subaru got so buried in the first place.
Official (Belated) Car Talk Update!: We have a winner.
Our winner was Danielle Molle who guessed that Emma's car would be free on April 11. The actual date was April 12 so Danielle was the closest. Congratulations Danielle!