Monday, December 15, 2008

Ice, ice, baby

I thought about adding a Youtube video, but I don't think I need it... can't you hear it in your head? "Ice, ice, baby...."

I realize that some of you face ice and snow all winter long, and a morning like today is nothing in the scheme of things. But it's not typical here in western Washington.

After our weekend snowfall, the temperature dropped last night to lock in the ice and snow we already had on the ground. When I got up (around 6:15) and dressed to go for a run, I knew it would be cold out, below freezing most certainly. I layered up in a Hind top that I sometimes use for skiing and topped it with a half-zip that matches my long skirted pants from Skirt Sports. I was pretty impressed with the way the two shirts hugged my mid-section and compressed my stomach roll, kind of like a spandex girdle (but not uncomfortable). As I looked at my unusually trim mid-section in the mirror, I contemplated taking the shirts off and wearing them to work instead!

I added my usual Brooks reflective jacket, a fleece cap, gloves, and a scarf (which I really didn't need). By the time I was all dressed and wired up with my ipod and Garmin (and managed to achieve a satellite signal), it was a little past 6:30. I knew I would need to be slow in the icy conditions, so I planned to keep the distance relatively short.

Just like last year in the occasionally cold weather, the sidewalks were alternately clear and icy in patches. The roads that I had to cross were invariable slick. I was most nervous when there was a car in the vicinity!

I followed my usual route, only cutting it short by turning for home at Everett Avenue instead of trying to go further. By adding a block or two around QFC, I managed to just hit five miles before stopping at Starbucks. Amazingly, I hit five miles at exactly one hour. So, a twelve-minute mile pace. Slow to be sure, but I really had no alternative in the ice.

I got my latte at Starbucks, then walked the remaining half mile home. I felt like it had been a good run, considering the cold weather and ice.

Later on, after I was dressed, I headed out to the car for work. I only live five or ten minutes from court on normal days. On a day like this, I should have allowed extra time. Should have.

I had not driven or moved the car since Saturday, which quickly became obvious. To my dismay, the front windshield was covered with several inches of snow on top of a layer of ice. To make it worse, all the doors were frozen shut. I quickly called work to tell them I'd be late. Then I got some hot water and managed to open the passenger side door, then the driver's side.

Unfortunately I had done all this without my gloves on! So once I was in the car, I turned the defrost on high and sat for a few minutes while my frozen fingers thawed. After that, I was able to crawl into the back seat (as the back doors were still frozen) and find a brush and scraper, with which I finally cleared the front windshield.

So, some twenty-five minutes after my first efforts, I was able to turn on the windshield wipers, put the car into gear, and carefully make my way along the icy streets to work.

Running was much easier.

1 comment:

Terri said...

Oh my God Kristin, all of that just to get in your car!! It'll be interesting to see how much snow we get here tonight in our first snowstorm of the year. Call me a dork, but I am eagerly looking forward to using my Stabilicers in the snow for the first time!

And yes, I do now have that Vanilla Ice song in my head now!