Thursday, February 26, 2015

lately i've been walking like a fanatic; i go out every night and do three miles, even after i've walked a mile or two in the day. some days i don't drive at all, and this is good, because roads are icy, it's snowing and slick, and people by and large don't know how to handle it.

this is especially true for what's known as the marsha sharp, our one expressway, that cuts through town diagonally from the wealthy southwest part of town, right through the university and into downtown. the city is flat, but the marsha sharp was built through it, with its ramps coming up over it or dipping under the center of town. so navigating this freeway is about the only time a person encounters a hill in this city, and it's the only time anyone ever goes more than about forty-five. bad combination, for people who really don't know how to drive on ice.

and then, the city is on pins and needles, because one to three inches of snow is expected in the early morning, to make driving more treacherous in general. yes, i grew up in this stuff, i tell them, but i respect it, and stay off the roads whenever possible. and i consider myself lucky that i'm not spending my life on interstates where seventy or eighty is common if not expected. i said this was my view of dallas, but they said that dallas doesn't get the snow and ice and hard wind like we're getting out here in the plains. i was saying that i kind of respect a high-plains, hard-wind, snow and ice kind of place, i'm kind of enjoying it here.

and i walk every night, no matter what. sometimes the hard wind hits my face or a drizzle freezes in my beard, but the glaze on the grass and the pretty wide open field, with the fresh air, i live for that stuff. it doesn't strike me as too cold; it's rarely even below twenty. the ice can make it a little treacherous, but this is how i like to live dangerously. it's as close as one can get to ice skating.

so the marsha sharp had a fifteen-car pileup the last time it snowed, about five days ago. eighty-two accidents around the city, but the fifteen-car one was the worst in terms of pure number, and i reminded everyone to stay off the darn thing, you can get wherever you're going on the surface streets, and it never takes more than fifteen or twenty minutes anyway. out of fifteen cars, only two or three probably were clueless; the rest were just in the wrong place at the wrong time. but i heard about it when i happened to be in the post office; word got around quickly. it's times like that that i feel this is actually a pretty small city, and everyone knows everybody, pretty much. so you get into one with fourteen cars, chances are pretty good you know the people in at least one of them.

fodder for another story, i suppose, but i've gone dry, and i'm not writing much, being too preoccupied. time to turn that around, i think. more later...chou


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