Donuts In The Snow

IT’S OVER!
Red light, green light, crossing the highway in Ladysmith. Taken through the windshield with my mobile phone.

I posted my last blog ten days ago. When I awoke the next morning it was beginning to snow, just a wee skiff to keep the children happy; so I thought. I’ve spent many years in the great white north where a metre or more of snow overnight was not newsworthy. You just carried on. I regularly drove hundreds of miles on wilderness roads in extreme conditions of cold and deep snow. If you ended up in a ditch or broken down it could prove fatal so you drove accordingly and carried a few extra items in the event of emergency. If you saw someone off the road you stopped and made sure no-one was in trouble. It was all in a day’s passing. Here, if there’s enough snow to cover the ground, it is best to simply stay home. Today, the forecast is for 17 or more centimetres. A few people will die out there. Only half that fell and the sirens still wailed constantly all day.

Well, Jack enjoyed his Christmas. His new blanket was tasty!

The white stuff is slippery and if you have experience as a winter driver, you know that no amount of ability is enough when there is zero traction. Superior drivers use their superior experience to avoid situations which require superior skill. Unfortunately there are many motorists who apparently have no clue about winter driving. Steep hills covered in wet white grease and littered with goggly-eyed drivers stuck in their suv’s is reason enough to stay home. Those television ads depicting an all-wheel drive vehicle bursting through a bank of fluffy, dry snow forget to tell you one thing: you’ve got to stop sometime. Last night I saw a plug for an Alfa Romeo suv. (Stupid Urban Vanity) It was a gorgeous vehicle! But somehow I doubt the Italians fully understand Canadian driving conditions, not that many of these look-at-me-mobiles ever leave pavement. So I stayed home that morning and sat here pecking away at my writing.

The same old view south. In the distance, ships wait for cargo at another sundown, not a nice way to spend Christmas.

Then there was a horrific train wreck just south of Seattle. It was the very first run with paying passengers on a new high-speed rail service between Seattle and Portland. The train leapt off the rails and crashed down onto the main interstate highway in the state of Washington. The carnage incurred prevents this from being a hilarious story. To ad to the ludicrous tale, our boy Donny Trumpet (He’s always blowing his horn) was tweeting within three hours of the crash that this was a great example of why his infrastructure funding bill should be passed forthwith. The gormless ass! There were still people, dead and alive, trapped in the wreckage as he massaged his pathetic ego! Here on Vancouver Island we have solved any issue with railway safety. We cancelled our rail service.

Christmas morning; a brief respite. Jill and Jack savour a few minutes of sunlight.

 

Tracks in the snow.

Now over a week later I slide this blog off the back burner of my writer’s stove with a story from today’s local newspaper about a visiting Calgary man who “Spun a few donuts in the snow at Transfer Beach last week to clear a path for his 70-year-old mom to walk.” There’s a photo of a little car sitting in the middle of several circular furrows. That this was a news-worthy story says a lot about the pace of life in Ladysmith. I’m wondering how long this dude has had his mom going in circles. Such is our existence between Christmas and New Years. The days are grey and wet, the nights are long and wet. My sense of humour is short and dry. Outside on the final Friday of the year, I go to the local pool to swim my final lengths for the year. This morning I crawled out of bed one toe at a time and now dawn reluctantly squeezes the black sky to a porridge grey. A thick fog descends with a syrupy penetrating drizzle. In the afternoon, the drizzle turned to snow.

The bunk job completed. The deck beam and storage shelving are new. Apart from difficult angles, the real trick was to make everything look as if it belonged.

Open for business. This is the guest berth, until recently used as junk storage. Well, it’s junk if you don’t know you’ve got it or can’t find it. Emergency tools stored handily. The wheelbarrow handle has been adapted as an emergency tiller.

When I went aboard ‘Seafire’ to check on her, it was colder inside than out, like a tomb. This old boat has been my home, warm and snug through some long winter nights. I feel as if I’ve abandoned her and wonder where I will be this time next year. Well, life has to be lived as it comes, one moment at a time. When you look back, even 365 days, you’ve already forgotten so much of the blur. Just this moment, it’s all we have.

I wish everyone the best in 2018. May we all have something to do, someone to love and something to look forward too.

Happy New Year
May your days be sunny and your seas calm.

Year’s end is neither an end nor a beginning but a going on, with all the wisdom that experience can instill in us.” … Hal Borland 

3 responses to “Donuts In The Snow

  1. A perfect wish for all of us! Happy new year to you too, Fred, and thanks for all the very enjoyable posts and images. May good health be yours throughout the coming year.

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  2. Laurie, All the best to you as well.
    Fred

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  3. Hi Fred. Another year has gone by with a blink of an eye. We read your blogs with interest and amusement as they keep us up to date as to life in your part of Canada. Hope Jill is keeping busy now there are no children to keep in control, apart from the old one. Hope the new year bring you both new adventures. Over here in the uk not much has changed we had mum and dad over Christmas day, what a struggle to get mum from the car into the house, it took three of us. I think it will be the last time she comes over. At home she sleeps most of the time hardly ever moving from her chair and her ability to remember or retain anything gets less each month, sad to say its no life for her or dad who cares for her. I can see only difficult time ahead for both. As for Heather and myself we keep plodding on. Heather is kept busy with the foster children (two sisters at the moment) and our Cathryn who is 21 next month (makes me feel old) our Paul is 60 a few days later. I changed jobs in October. After working in Birmingham for the last five years now working back in Coventry. Only a quarter mile from were I worked when I first left school in 1979. It was a difficult decision to change jobs as I enjoyed working with Paul every day, so I`m trying to get him in with me at the new place. Its closer to home and more money. New company is cadcam automotive Coventry and I`m restoring old jaguar e-types. The other interesting thing that happened last year is after ridding motorbikes for nearly 40years got knocked off by a driver not looking where he was going. Whiplash, bad back, and a few days off work plus the bike was destroyed, ok now. Anyway hope you all have good new year. Tim.

    Ps. Our address is 101 byron street barwell le98fe. (google earth it.)

    Sent from Mail for Windows 10

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