My little camera didn’t do yesterday’s storm justice.
No, this wasn’t a natural disaster (there’s enough of those elsewhere recently), it was simply a typical good dump of snow, about 6 inches, like Binky got out his way.
It was, though, enough to be exciting. Scary, even, for me. So while you look at the fun side of snow in this morning’s pictures, let me regale you with a tale of yesterday afternoon.
A flake or two meandered down about 14 00. By three, it was so thick that the accompanying sound effects in a movie would have been, “Ka-FLUMP! Ka-FLUMP!” E.g. went out to the main road with her camera, and watched a fourteen-wheeler crawling its way up the hill, a van with its four-way flashers on, and at the bottom of the hill, a police cruiser at the intersection. (You can find pix here.) Good thing we weren’t going anywhere.
Then we remembered her dad.
Eddy had a routine doctor’s appointment at the hospital. While he can drive all right during the day, he prefers to be a passenger at night or during inclement weather, when visibility is reduced. E.g. called her parents’ place, and yes, Eddy had left before the storm started and was now in the thick of it. Would Rose like us to help her husband get home? Well… all right.
The plan was that E.g. would find her dad and drive him home in his car. Since there was no sense leaving a vehicle at the hospital, or E.g. stranded at her parents’ house, E.g. and I took the automatic so I could retrieve her from Rose and Eddy’s. And I got behind the wheel, for my first taste of slippery streets.
Windshield wipers on. Long strings of crawling traffic. The dictum to Always keep going, Never stop unless absolutely necessary. The terror of losing control as we went downhill (Saint John is very hilly — not tall ones, but numerous). The car jerking sideways no matter how delicately I applied the brakes or titched the steering wheel. Falling onto the shoulder and easing the vehicle back onto the asphalt. And E.g. beside me, talking me through it.
We made it to the hospital, and E.g. went in to find the doctor’s office. It was closed and dark. No dad. All we could do was return home, this time E.g. driving.
Another call to Rose and Eddy’s revealed that Daddy wasn’t home yet — a bit unsettling, since they live closer to the hospital than we do — but with another look out the picture window, Rose rejoiced to find her husband powering up their long, steep drive.
Eddy is an excellent driver, and has always loved to drive. He told us later that afternoon that most of the trip home from the hospital, though slow, had been manageable. The hardest part had been the final right turn onto their street, in the thickest whiteout, when he really couldn’t see much of anything. After fifty-one years of turning right onto this road, however, he decided to use his body-memory to make the turn, and succeeded.
He called it “gut instinct”, but he may have been thinking of another source of Help that begins with “G”.
This week, several food-related incidents occurred. One was that we’ve gotten back on the Weight Watchers program, and have agreed to swap k.p. duty every other week.
The second is that I’ve been perusing online seed catalogues, making little charts and studying the backyard while playing fetch with the dogs.
The next is that we’ve signed up for Bible studies at the church we’ve started attending. Eh? Well, yes, this denomination is acutely aware of social justice issues, and one of the possibilities for a several-week study is the danger of according corporations the right to patent food.
Frankly, I had no idea what the topic was about. E.g., though, decided that last night’s supper entertainment would be the American documentary film, Food, Inc. It was a well-balanced film. It stated facts clearly, calmly, and soberly. And it disturbed me greatly.
Disregard for animal welfare was only a side issue in this film; human rights abuse was its main focus. Health issues, environmental harm, employment practices tantamount to human trafficking, and governmental and police collusion with food industry owners — suddenly I don’t feel so hungry.
If you’re Canadian, you have a few weeks yet to see this film on the CBC website in the Passionate Eye series (I’m presuming that the programming is inaccessible to people outside the country). But be warned, it isn’t dinner theatre.
I spent today online again, this time researching container gardening tips and gathering a list of calcium-rich foods. Ones that didn’t start with a cow — or patented soybeans, for that matter.
Lemme know if you’re interested in any of the menu plans I concoct for next week. And don’t worry, I’ll smile again soon.
Growing up is just no fun at all.
Here in the North, the longest night has just passed.
Here in the North, the gardens are empty, the leaves fallen.
Here in the North, the blackness of night and the whiteness
of snow are the chief colours.
We welcome the fir tree, ever green.
We encircle it with lights, to call forth the growing light.
We trim it with talismans, memories of past places,
memorials to the dead.
It is sacred.
May your holidays be blessed. We’ll see you next week.