The Hazy Day(s) of Winter

coatrackIt wasn’t like there hadn’t been warning. After all, hadn’t Ned Stark told us, years or even eons ago, Winter is Coming? His whole dour doomed damned family intoned it, repeatedly, Winter is Coming. Plus, as I’ve mentioned before, every jolly soul I’ve met before, during and aft my recent relocation has said something along the lines of “boy (snicker, snicker) are you ready for winter?”
And I thought I was. I bought coats, multiple coats. Such a coat collection as you’ve ever seen. Rain coats, puffy coats, polar coats. Just last week, I added a flash new down jacket to the mix, after coveting a friend’s snappy wrapper. Snow boots, rain boots, mud boots, disco boots. I had gloves, scarves galore, ear muffs even. No hats, my head is too large. Okay, a couple of knit hats that I bought with false hope. They fit as well as a yarmulke. So, not at all. And a trapper hat that is also too small but surprisingly fetching.
I also had followed the advice of coworkers. Two snow shovels, one for the patio, one for the car. A small ice scraper for the car. A larger ice scraper with a brush for the car. And the car itself, a Subaru, which my research had told me was the safest and most reliable car for winter driving. I mean, within my price range. I’m sure a Range Rover or Land Cruiser is even safer and more reliable, but not in the budget. I’ve spent too much on coats and hats that don’t fit.
So, I was ready. Ready for winter. And then, it didn’t come. They kept talking about it on the news. Warmest December on record! Effects of El Nino already in play! Rain, but no snow. 69 degrees on Christmas Eve. The Fed Ex guy delivered in shorts. Babies crying. Children sad. No white Christmas. Santa’s sled had to be put on a trailer bed and towed behind a Range Rover (Santa has rich friends!).
I sort of felt responsible. I alone had brought the warmth from my homeland, the land of sunshine and beautiful produce and perpetual tans.
And then, it happened. Slowly, softly, four days after Christmas, the snow came. In the night, so white, so bright. I woke up at 3:30 a.m. and peered outside to see a light scattering of powder. I snuggled back in bed excited about what the morning would bring. And in the morning, there was a good several inches covering the grounds of my complex. I took Daisy out for her first morning walk and marveled at the pretty scene. I even shoveled a sweet little path on my patio, from the front door to the gate.
Rookie mistake! Because within about an hour, the soft snow had turned to sleeting, freezing rain. The sweet path had turned into a lane of treachery, a veritable slippery scary ice trail. I felt like Anna. No Elsa! No Anna, when she tried to climb those frozen steps up to Elsa’s ice castle. And can we just digress for a sec? Conceal don’t feel is a TERRIBLE message! I mean, don’t get me wrong, love that movie but if you think about it, it teaches the children an awful lesson. Okay, in the end we all learn that love can solve everything, but still, don’t you sometimes find yourself humming “conceal don’t feel”? You know you do!
Okay, back to me. And the snow. Do you want to build a snowman? Never mind!
Fortunately, I was already scheduled to work remotely yesterday, so aside from having to walk poor Daisy Petals through the sleet, I just stayed in, worked, made soup, stuff like that. I didn’t even bother to check out my car, because 1- Subaru (see above), and 2- wasn’t going anywhere (see directly behind and worry if you have memory loss, it was just a few words ago). This turned out to be Rookie Mistake Number Two, aka Rookie Mistake El Grande! Because, my solid reliable Subaru had turned into a Subarusicle! Frozen, solid ice completely covering the car, like one big car shaped block. And remember all of those scrapers and shovels I had so presciently purchased? In the trunk! Which was frozen shut! Oh dear!
I spent about half an hour this morning trying to chip away at it, with my hands, a stick, the warmth of my tears. No go. I retreated back inside and pondered another day without leaving the house. I emailed my parents. I messaged a friend. I googled trunk frozen shut. I went back outside and glared, hoping perhaps the hot beam of my despair might work. No dice. I went back inside and googled trunk frozen shut again, and this time, actually read the advice. Then armed with a kettle full of very hot water, a spatula and a lot of determination, I set to it. Oh yeah, I also started the car and the defrosters (yay Subaru). It took another half hour, but this time it was successful and I was able to retrieve all of the snow removal equipment from the trunk and dutifully place it in the backseat.
There’s a learning curve, right? Obviously, this was just a very tiny appetizer of what will come. I know now not to keep my shovel and rake in the trunk. Not to shovel the patio path before freezing sleet. My wonderful neighbor came by last night and showed me these magical pellets you can sprinkle on the patio and walks to keep them from freezing. I’ll remember to use the defrosters. I won’t let 24 hours go before trying to clear the car off. I’ll learn, it will get better. After all, winter is coming, and I need to be ready.
The end, for now

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2 responses

  1. I love the way you always put a humorous spin on your trials and tribulations. You’ll be a seasoned veteran in no time.

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