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GANDER, N.L., May 25 (Canadian-Media): Residents in Newfoundland were dismayed by a late-spring storm that buried cars in snow and closed schools Thursday, media reports said.
“You would think you were in January,” said one employee of the Gander Public Library, which opened four hours late, after the town plowed the streets. “People have been golfing, and raking, everything here was very spring-like. So this has set us back.”
Linda Libby, Environment Canada meteorologist had said more than 35 centimetres of snow fell at Gander International Airport overnight and into Thursday.
Loretta Dwyer of Loretta’s Flower World in Gander said said the snowfall reminded her of more than 69 centimetres that fell there on May 18 and 19, 2013.
Larry Dohey, director of programming at The Rooms art gallery, cultural museum and archives in St. John’s, N.L., said his Irish ancestors from Newfoundland’s Cape Shore region suggested bottling May snowfalls and using the liquid on your face as a way to soften freckles.
Other traditions propose May snow as a cure for sore eyes, he said.
In John K. Crellin’s 1994 book “Home Medicine: The Newfoundland Experience,” he offers another explanation for the May snow folklore.
“One Newfoundland informant thought this practice was linked with May being the month of the Virgin Mary and the need to receive her blessing,” Crellin writes.
“Perhaps, too, there was a vague link with a common treatment for sore eyes in Ireland, namely, the water of certain holy wells.”