CSI: Criminal Snow Investigations

 

Aftermath
Aftermath

It was a dark and stormy night in the greater metropolitan area of Tokyo, perfect weather for making snowmen. It was the worst blizzard to hit the city in more than forty years. Who would’ve guessed that the low pressure system would so suddenly leave as soon as it came? I, the sole technician on the roster for what had been expected to be a slow weekend, was left to examine the chilly remains of somebody’s beloved at various locations on our now fine and sunny streets.

The Morning After
Carnage

Large areas of carnage could be seen everywhere.

bicycle parkade, bicycle parking, Japan
The Search

I slowly began my search in the concrete jungle. Snow people were gradually becoming increasingly hard to find as the heat sinks and asphaltum slowly spread.

Lonely Snow Bunny
Lonely Snow Bunny

Snowmen and their families usually congregate near dwellings inhabited by human children, but the grounds were barren around nearby highrises. All that could be found was one sad-looking snow bunny who was missing one ear. These li’l critters obviously did not multiply like rabbits under the heat of the midday sun.

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Parasol Protection
Parasol Protection

Parasols and umbrellas were popular choices to prevent evaporation of delicate surfaces with high-moisture content exposed to the harsh reality of the day. Tucking an umbrella into the spokes of a bicycle was probably not a good idea considering that snow people usually do not have legs worthy of mobility. Escape was futile.

The Circle
The Circle

Some sought solace and support, drifting sadly into circles looking for comfort from others like them.

Dregs of Society
Dregs of Society

After searching in the distant hills, I found those who had dirtied their previously pristine reputations.

Spattering
Spattering

Burial Grounds

The photographs I was taking were the last remaining records of what were once some upstanding snow men and women. Additional forensics staff would have to be called in to determine more details by looking at the photos of the splattered snow.

Fleeing...
Fleeing…
Departure Gate
Departure Gate

Several victims had obviously realized the serious of their predicaments and tried heading for cooler pastures where the dark pavement would not absorb the sun’s harmful rays. Like Lot’s wife, they were immobile.

Relationship Dissolving Before Your Eyes
Salvaging What is Left

Some sought to console each other even though their relationship was dissolving before their eyes.

Skid Row
On the Skids
Desperate Drunk
Desperate Drunk

Some did not make it out of Skid Row; some sought sanctuary in local drinking establishments. I guess the Creator knew that those with bottle caps for noses might have a weakness for the brew.

Wreckage after a hit-and-run
Wreckage after a hit-and-run

Some poor sods never made it past the intersection where the nitty gritty of urban life ground them down to pulp.

Kamakura aka Snow Hut
Kamakura
Snow Family
Snow Family

Others only wanted cool shelter on an increasingly warm day. Entire families of snow people and snow animals fled for the hills and hunkered down in some kamakura, the local version of a snow hut or quinzee. Parents were willing to sully themselves if their children could remain untouched.

Battlefield
Battlefield
Fortification Remains
Fortification Remains
Interior of Snow Fort
Interior of Snow Fort
Shelter Against the Elements
Shelter

I stumbled upon the aftermath of what looked like the Great Snowpocalypse of 2014. I could picture it all: Snowman against snowman, snowballs piled high, and the thick, cold walls of the snow forts. These snow people were obviously great engineers and architects as well as masters of warfare.

Witness to Massacre
Witness to Massacre
Inmates I
Inmates
Silent Witness
Silent Witness

Few wanted to step forth and give testimony about the horrors that they witnessed. The ducks and the rabbit refused to squeal. The dwarves were too happy about the whole thing for my liking.

Danger
Danger
Unnatural Habitat
Unnatural Habitat

Did anybody ever warn them that places with fuel trucks and palm trees might not be the best places for snow people?

Remains Piled High
Remains Piled High

Mountains of innocent victims piled high on every street corner? No sanctuary in refrigerated quarters or delivery service of items that must be kept cool was offered.

Carcass
Carcass
Evidence
Evidence

By the end of the day, all that was left was some sloppy, grey slush and a tin can that might have been a trendy snowman’s fashion statement in better times.

Altar to the Snow Gods
Altar to the Snow Gods

What can a snow man in Japan do but pray to the snow gods that they will be reincarnated as a snow drift or possibly a kamakura in Akita or Hokkaido to provide shelter to others in similar straits.

Close-up: Bewilderment and Shock
Close-up: Bewilderment and Shock
Close-up: Desperation
Close-up: Desperation

Remember these faces the next time you bear your shovel and think about who you might be hurting. Do not let their deaths be in vain.

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