This pandemic winter, I didn’t bother to saddle myself with a lengthy list of positive aspirations in the name of self-improvement. I kept my goal simple. Don’t fall on black ice.
When I used to walk Sophie the Wonder Dog, icy spots were discovered and committed to memory: the slick spots where neighbors’ sump pump hoses spilled onto sidewalks; uneven pavement; icicles forming from gutters, the latter requiring a full inspection of where the drips were landing below.
Fetching the daily newspapers becomes a special challenge – and yes, I still get those delivered.
As the season progresses, and my cold tolerance improves, I wear fewer and fewer layers to make that journey down to the driveway apron, but always I wear my boots. The trouble is, I never bothered to think how old those boots were.
Seventeen years old, that’s the answer – because once I took that spill, I was anxious to find the cause.
It was silly, as most accidents are, a confluence of distraction mixed with good intentions.
I had been out in the slush and muck plus some newly fallen snow, playing with my granddaughters, one of whom had pitched her half-eaten cookie to the ground. Not wishing to waste food, but also mindful of the needs of our feathered friends, after scooting the kids into the dry garage, I’d stepped out to fling the cookie into the garden.
One minute I was up, and the next I was down.
It is always the same, yet always a surprise.
The children saw Oma cry, but nothing was broken, and the sore bits were happier, ironically, after ice.
Some retail therapy then ensued, and I finally replaced those old boots – not that any boots are a match for black ice.
And now, in a matter of days, we will “leap forward” to face the end of all this bother.
In my book, it’s not a moment too soon. (c)