Hat on Top, Coat Below


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Without Mountains, What’s the Point?

December 13, 2010

Cheerful snowmen light-up cupSilly me, being all complacent yesterday about Snowmaggedon. Because more snow was predicted overnight and it was windy enough that we thought drifting would be an issue, Mr. Karen and I put off shoveling until this morning. While this would have been an excellent day to work from home, I had to be in the office to interview a job candidate this morning, so I started shoveling at the earliest hour I thought was decently neighborly. Mr. Karen, who did not have to interview anyone, came out a bit later, before I’d quite finished with what I considered my half of the shoveling. I kissed his cold face goodbye in the driveway before I headed off. I had two and half hours to make it the 40 miles to the office in time for the interview, which is about an hour and a half longer than it usually takes me, so I thought I’d be fine. Stopped dead on the freeway thirty minutes later only 8 miles from my house, I started to wonder. I got off at the next exit, figuring I’d take my chances on the surface streets; they couldn’t really be moving any slower than the freeway at that point. I got all the way up to 30 miles an hour on the alternate route and was feeling pretty good about my chances of making it to the interview on time. At a stoplight, I thought to check my work e-mail on my phone, something I generally avoid doing because it’s too easy to get sucked in and forget to go when the light turns green, thus inviting road rage, but this was an unusual morning. And what do you know—there was an e-mail from the HR person who sets up the interviews saying the woman I was supposed to talk to needed to reschedule because she’d hurt her back shoveling snow. I considered turning around and going home but thought that would probably take me just as long as continuing on to work, so I pressed on. If I’d know what was ahead, I would have chosen differently. Traffic was flowing slowly but steadily until about a mile after I turned onto a major north/south artery. Looking at the traffic information that overlays some roads on the interactive map in my car, I kept expecting it to ease up, but just as I’d be reaching the part where the color changed from red (very slow), the red would leap ahead of my position. The problem turned out to be one stoplight at which there’s a rather gentle uphill grade, which many, many vehicles were having trouble negotiating because it was so slippery. The light would turn green, wheels would spin on the ice, and only the first couple cars in each line of traffic would get through before the light turned red. I wondered if I should have stayed on the freeway after all, except that route has a ramp that slopes uphill on which I’ve seen many people slipping and sliding before, so it could be it was no better. Once I got through that light, I was able to reach previously unheard of speeds of up to 40 miles an hour (provided I didn’t get behind someone who only felt comfortable driving 20 miles per hour). There were two more instances where I felt it necessary to bail out of my usual route due to backups, but I eventually did make it to the office, three hours after I left my driveway. With the exception of the time I got hit by a minivan that totaled Mr. Karen’s truck, this was quite possibly my worst drive to work ever. I know it’s winter in Michigan and this weather is perfectly normal, but I have no use for snow I can’t ski on, unless it’s in a form such as the cheerful snowmen on the light-up cup I bought myself in a moment of weakness in Walgreens a couple weeks back.


On this date in 2009: An Apology to My Government, in which I failed to be a responsible citizen.

2008: S.O.G. with P.I.P., in which I filled in some gaps in my childhood photo album.

2007: WDW Episode IV: A New Hope, in which I continued to milk my vacation trip report for every entry I could.

2006: What a Difference a Day Makes, in which glorious color turned to grey.

2005: 10 Things, in which I completed a meme I now wish I hadn’t, if only because I can’t remember who I was talking about in most of the points.

2004: Will My Skis Fit in the Overhead Bin?, in which I ranted about baggage claim.

2003: No entry.

2002: Weight Wait, in which I was a lot thinner than I am now.

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  1. lisa-marie Says:

    Three hours?!? Dang! How long did it take you to get home?

  2. KarenD Says:

    Two hours to get home, and only an hour and a half to get in this morning, so things are looking up!

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