The big snow storm has now passed. What a relief, I thought. Surely things will quickly resume something resembling normalcy (not that anything in my life is normal, but you get the idea). But, oh! How wrong I was! For now that the storm has passed, we are left to deal with the aftermath.
The clouds broke, we got some fog, and then we got sunshine. People walked about, seeking to return to life as we desert dwellers usually know it. All went well, for about ten seconds. Why, you ask? Well, I'll tell you. To complement the snow, we've had freezing temperatures. At night, it's been getting below 15°F, a temperature that has a nasty tendency to freeze any form of precipitation.
And so, beneath all the beautiful snow is lots and lots of ice. Ice under the snow. Ice on sidewalks. Ice on stairs. Ice on the roads. Ice. Ice. Ice. Admittedly, I do fancy ice skating from time to time. But not when I'm just walking around outside. Thanks to all this ice, I've had the following incidents happen to me. Feel free to sympathize.
- Slipped on ice.
- Slipped on ice and nearly lost my footing, barely avoiding a fall.
- Slipped on ice, lost my footing, but miraculously managed to catch myself before I fell.
- Slipped on ice I couldn't see (sometimes termed "black ice", but mostly just when it's on asphalt--this happened on a sidewalk), and had nothing or no one to hold onto. Plus, the patch of ice was like five square feet, so I was doomed the moment I set foot on it. I knew that attempting to leap into a fabulous triple lutz would be dangerous, if not impossible, so I did my best to glide smoothly on through, and for a fleeting moment thought I would make it. That is, until my feet were suddenly no longer vertical with the rest of my body. They shot forward, using the force of inertia to trigger a new momentum for my body. Suddenly, they were moving so fast that there was nowhere to go but up, and up they went. And, conversely, down went the upper half of my body. Arms went flailing, eyes bugged out, vocal chords vibrated in the form of a yell, and down I went. Sideways. In slow motion, I watched my feet climb higher into the air. Then, with a quick switch into real time, I fell quickly and met the ice-covered pavement, landing squarely on my right hip. Almost as quickly, I used my hands to push myself up, and climbed to my feet, half expecting my leg to suddenly detach itself as a result of the fall. It did not, however, and I was able to walk away, bruised but otherwise unharmed.
- After this near brush with death, I suddenly become ice-phobic. I suddenly have OCD, and every step on or near either potential or real ice must measure only one inch. Even with these cautious baby steps, I slip on more ice.
- I go for coffee (well, hot chocolate) with a friend. After closing the door to the car, I turn to start the trek inside. I've barely moved when I slip on ice and nearly kill myself. I grab the car, short of breath, adrenaline pumping through my probably-icicled veins.
- I get braver again, walking on ice (I can't avoid it, it's everywhere) once more. Still cautious, mind you. I continue to slip, but less life-threateningly than previously described.
I am pleased to report that, though I still have to walk on ice, I'm still here and still intact. And, truth be told, I'd like to keep it that way.