It started snowing on Thursday night in typical fashion – light, fluffy flakes wafting their angelic way down from the heavens to grace the earth – but quickly turned into a flurry of tiny paratroopers storming the beaches of Normandy, hard-bent on conquering and obliterating all forms of visibility and automobiles that stood in their way. In a manner not unlike that of fire ants, their might and power existed not so much in the way of intelligence and strategy but simply because there was so goddamned many of them.
Quickly following on Friday evening the atoms of the world, having been blanket-attacked by this crystallized phenomenon, decided that they’d rather be sunning themselves elsewhere and promptly stopped moving, sending the temperature of the area into digits that have difficulty showing up on any self-respecting thermometer. You could see the trees practically shrivel themselves up as they cursed the winter and snuggled down into the earth, forever glad that their genitals naturally fall off before it gets this cold.
It was into Satan’s deep freeze that I found myself heading on Saturday morning, intent on finding a means to convey myself and my family to the wild north in search of the season’s quota of pre-manufactured blessings to shower upon my relatives, friends, and those I was unlucky enough to draw out of a hat at Thanksgiving. To say it was, “crisp”, outside was a gross misrepresentation; it was insomuch as to say that plate glass is, “soggy”. Snorting a fresh cup of bleach would have been warmer and not nearly as traumatic to my respiratory system.
My thrashings about to free my vehicle from the icy depths and to awaken it (much groaning and complaining ensued) were for naught; for on the outskirts of town and heading away into the barren wastelands was a paved trail intersected by copious piles of meteorological soldiers in strategic positions, that which we so coyishly term here as, “drifts”. They are amusing when approached by sleighs, snowmobiles, and jackasses in trucks, but not nearly as pleasant when slammed into with a sedan.
Besides – by this time my nipples were tight and my shorts were not. I know my limitations.
It was not until late Sunday night that we finally ventured forth into the dangerous night, intent on our goal. The weather had settled down – somewhat – and my wife, gorgeous thing that she is, had a case of cabin fever that would make even a hibernating badger agree to go for a swim and a cappuccino. If the weather didn’t kill her, I was going to.
Our shopping was rosy, our cheeks were so merry, our bodies were shivering and saying, “Hail Mary!” The stores were pleasantly stripped of their usual compliment of assholes-with-carts, thanks to the inability to see through frozen corneas, so we were able to complete a good percentage of our mission in record time. After doing our part to stimulate the economy, we headed to the local 24-hour breakfast-all-day restaurant to replenish our expired load of carbs.
After our meal, my son took off running around the 99% empty establishment to stretch his legs and ended up behind the counter as I was paying for the meal, the workers cooing at how cute he was and so forth. They let him paw the various muffins for sale in the display case (sorry, folks) and the next thing I knew, he was marching away, lemon-poppyseed pastry in hand, huge grin on his face like he had hoisted a bank. I admonished him for taking it, but the staff was so overcome by his adorable countenance that they simply tossed it into our order and we took it home with us, sans charge.
“How useful!” you say, and I agree wholeheartedly. Tomorrow we’re going to a car dealership to let him loose on the place.