January 12, 1998

Woke up to an inch of snow outside, and the debate as to whether or not I should brave the elements to find my way to work. I finally decided to do so, as much because it was something that John would do as it was just an inch and the fact that I'd have the Range Rover with it's awesome low gear. As it was, however, it was a far more adrenaline-charged morning commute than I either planned for or hoped.

I dressed warming, fed Fezzik, let him do his thing outside and then put him back in the house. I am planning on getting stuff from work and going back home after lunch and working at home and getting my presentation planning done there. It should be possible and easier than trying to get home during rush hour in the midst of the possible snow storm this afternoon.

The drive along the dirt road and all that was very easy. It was Thompson hill that was the problem, especially the last little bit that led out onto East Lake Sammamish as it does straight downhill and it was covered in slick ice and there had been no sanding of the hill, at all. Not good. Very bad, even. Cars were lined up for three or four blocks while each waited for the first to make it down the slide before trying it. Nearly everyone slid a bit along there, and control was very difficult, pretty much impossible with brakes, so I put the Rangie in low gear, first gear, and just let it chug its slow way down. I kept near the concrete barrier on the right, and went slower than even a walking pace down the last bit, and still slid into the barrier, with a muffled thud. No crumples at all, just the soft thud of the wheels or the bumper. Soft touches that got me down the hill safely, slowly and in control.

The car in front of me had slid sideways down part of it before the guy frantically tried going into reverse, which actually did something to stop him. The Rangie's built to take mild thumps. When I stopped at the gas station to fill him up, I checked that side and there were no marks at all. Yay.

I was still a bit shaky, though. It hasn't helped that I had less than an eighth of a tank of diesel, too, and had been a bit worried about running out of fuel before getting somewhere useful. So I am glad that I made it okay. Got my 10 am meeting in that I needed in order to do the other things that I'm doing, so I can go back home and do the rest of it safely where I don't have to drive anymore. Rush hour with Seattle drivers on unaccustomed ice is not a good thing to do. It's not my driving that I'm too worried about, it's the driving of the people around me, as usual.

Stopped at Victor's for a soy banana split latte, as I needed its comfort badly by then, and got to work with no problems whatsoever, but still avoided the hills where I could. The drink was hot and comforting and exactly what I needed.

Raven's coming over tonight, says that since he's a child of an alley where the ice was a welcome relief from the snow, that he'll have no problem coming over. But then I wonder, just a bit, if Ohio had... well... *hills* with ice and snow and the like on 'em...

We'll see. I hope he gets there safe and sound.

© 1998 by Liralen Li.

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