Last night, en route to my employment as a care giver in a group home for the developmentally disabled, I had the pleasantry of driving through a blizzard. Fantastic. Thankfully, I did not end up being a lawn decoration for others to gawk at passing by. If I wasn’t in such a time crunch to responsibility I would have been a much more useful passerby to those frigid ornaments, but duty calls (and so does a paycheck).
My twenty minute drive quickly morphed into an hour trek into a blank screen shrouded in darkness. I am blessed to own an all wheel drive car. Without that luxury, I am fairly certain I would have given my business to a tow truck.
Other cars in my rear view seemed to deem me as the Rudolf of the group. Where ever I went, they went. It was nerve wracking. Finally, the herd gave way as I nearly stuck myself in a fairly large snow drift in my lane on the highway. Zig zagging my way free, I was pleased to be the caboose and follow someone else for a change.
Upon my exit I was met with another challenge. Where the heck was the road? The snow was about mid calf at this point and not a single crunch by a passing car to drive on. Left with only a slight sense of direction, I turned onto what I assume was the road.
Every window appeared paper white. Not a windshield swipe in the world could fix that. The snow was careening intensely down as if at war with the patrons of Wisconsin.
Ahead, I take notice of an impending round about. I make it around what I think is the traffic circle. In all honesty, I’m fairly certain I may have gone up the skirt. There were no visible lanes so if any one asks, I was totally on the road.
I nearly fell victim to the grips of two roads that were yet to be plowed. After some wiggling and missing my street twice due to low visibility, I made it.
After catching up at work, I shoveled the two handicap ramps and the driveway. I had to do this on two separate occasions through out the night to keep up with the snow fall. Thankfully, sometime after midnight the snow seized.
The local news stated that my area accumulated somewhere around 8.5-9.5 inches. Not bad for being the first substantial snow of the season. I can’t complain too much, at least nature waited this long.
After a 10.5 hour shift I had come to realize that the road had yet to be plowed. My boss took a snow blower from the garage and pushed it into the knee deep road. Shredding and tossing snow in every which direction, he cleared a path to the neighboring plowed road. I was free… Thankful and free.
The drive home wasn’t nearly as treacherous as the last drive. I could actually see out my windows and the roads were almost good enough to go the speed limit.
Eventually, I make it home. Currently I live in an apartment above an accounting firm down town. There is a strip of various businesses ranging from an empty floral shop, to a hair salon, to a bar. My parking lot is behind the building and separated into two segments. Closest to the building is dedicated to employees of the business. The section beyond that is dedicated to the tenants upstairs.
As I arrive at the driveway at about 10 am, I see that the land lord has not plowed… Come on, really? I could see at 6 am or even 8 am, but 10 am? I pull into the employee parking lot because it seems easier to get into. It looks as if it were plowed. I was wrong. I try and wiggle my way back to the road to try and get to the tenant entrance. The road itself isn’t plowed either. I get stuck and once again subject my car to the dance of shame. I manage to free myself and power lunge my car into the deep snow parking lot.
I am finally home. I’m finally done driving. I can’t wait to get to bed. I thrust into my driver’s side door to combat the tall snow holding it in place and get out of the car. The drifts are high. I am nearly to my crotch in snow.
I make it to the apartment entrance. The snow has tackled the door into frozen submission. I panic a bit. I’m cold. I can barely feel my hands. I’m trying to keep from dropping my back pack and laptop bag. I pull and wiggle the door. I’m yanking on it hard as I prop my foot on the wall for leverage. I look like a cartoon. I kick some more snow away and continue in my cartoon like fashion on the door. Finally! The door opens slightly less than shoulder width. I do my best to liquefy myself and slip through the crack. I manage to maneuver my bags into the building. Ta daaa! I made it. Screw everything. I’m going to bed.
I finally manage to fall asleep around noon. I ended up getting my sleep disrupted at 4:16 pm due to a local fitness franchise calling begging to earn my money. I confusedly answered, “why are you calling me at four in the morning?!” I didn’t realize it was 4 pm instead of 4 am. Black out curtains, deep sleep and the third shift life will do that to a person.
Since I am the kind of person that instantly needs to get up and pee every time I wake in the slightest, I got up. After taking care of nature I decided to roam to the end of the communal hallway to peek out the window facing the parking lot.
ONLY ONE STRIP OF ROAD WAS PLOWED IN THE PARKING LOT. One strip for employees. One strip for tenants. What the heck? It’s not that hard. The landlord keeps a plow truck on the property. WHAT’S THE DEAL? None of the vacant stalls were plowed. Most people are day walkers and our lot is typically empty during the day. it wouldn’t have been an issue.
I go back to bed and attempt to sleep. I finally do and the next thing I know, my alarm is going off. It is 8 pm and I proceed to use the next hour to lay in bed wishing I wasn’t alive. I am so bloody tired that I can’t make sense of life. After some time catching up on useless Facebook banter, I give up and fry my eyes out with the bedside lamp. I get up and get dressed and do my pre-work routine.
It is now 915 pm and time to leave for work. I gather my things and make my way downstairs to the door. I am swiftly greeted with a frosty face plant as the door is frozen shut. I look beyond the glass to see that it has not been shoveled in front of the door. In fact I seem to be plowed in. Knee high and higher snow has been creeping its way up the door all day.
Once again panic sets in. I’m on a time line. Heck, I even left a bit early in case something stupid happened and here it is… I body check the door several times… Nothing. I try and shake the handle tab to loosen the clutches of the ice… Nothing. I put down my bags and begin to body check the door furiously, as if I was in an episode of Saw and my life depended on it. FINALLY. Once again, a slightly narrower than shoulder width gap. I’ll take it. I squeeze myself and my bags through then nearly topple into a snow bank. There was no room to avoid it. I took a few pictures to document the moment.
As I’m playing ‘low quality cell phone photographer’, a few drunks at the bar next door begin chanting “WELCOME TO WISCONSIN!” at me. At this point I am thoroughly ticked off. I am not in the mood for snow, for work, for people, for anything. I slip my fingers into my coat pocket and grab onto a guard dog knuckle key chain thinking to myself ‘Come at me, bro. I’m not in the mood.’ Nothing beyond that happened, of course. It was just some drunks trying to be funny, I just was not having it.
I get to my car on the other side of the parking lot. It is plowed in by the one strip of snow removal the landlord was so kind to do. I rocked back and forth and back and forth until my precipitation casket broke. I get to the main road infuriated. I decide to call my significant other to vent.
I’m genuinely not the type to call someone to bitch, but I have had it. Done. No more. Going to explode. Game over. My significant other is handicapped. He planned on coming home to my place the following day. IF MY PLACE ISN’T REGULAR PERSON ACCESSIBLE, HOW THE HELL WILL IT BE HANDICAP ACCESSIBLE?! We decided to rearrange plans and I would take the hour and a half drive to his place after work instead.
I will have to sell my fluids in order to fund my trip down because it is a few days before payday. (We all know how poverted those last days are.) After that I will attempt to make it back into my apartment for an overnight bag and I will head down.
My car needs some maintenance and some possible repairs. I’m hoping to all heck that I don’t run into any more problems on the road. In theory those repairs will happen when I get to my man. Wish me luck.