I look out my window as the sun rises, and sure enough, my ice-phobic neurotic Newburyport nightmare has come about.
All that Newburyport rain at 10:30 last night, has frozen in a flash, and it’s a skating rink out there.
I debate whether it’s too early to call what must be one exhausted Newburyport Department of Public Works (DPW), but decide finally that I will either get a recording, or an exhausted Newburyport DPW person, but what do I have to lose, except an encounter with a totally exasperated and exhausted Newburyport DPW person. I decide to chance it.
I get a downright cheery sounding soul on the other end of the phone, who promises that the sand folks will come once again to our Newburyport neighborhood. I am relieved by this empathic response.
Examining the situation outside as the sun rises, I come to the conclusion that this is not black ice, that is a thin layer of slippery stuff, but instead, that this is gray ice, a thick layer of slippery stuff. My skeptical self doubts that it will melt in the next decade. The sun is barely slivered over the roof tops in my neighborhood, and I have already worked myself up into a total early morning dither.
I tell myself, “What a wuss. There are people without power for days, if not weeks because of really, really bad ice, and I am dithering about grey ice. And this wussiness is from a person, who sort of got to a semi-professional ice skating status. The jumps and twirls weren’t much, but they were still jumps and twirls on ice.”
And I tell myself that I used to literally sail onto the ice (of course I had ice skates on), but I would always pay attention to the fact that I was on ice, slippery stuff, and not somewhere else less slick.
So plan A) is in place. I put on my boots, bought at my favorite Newburyport boot shoe store up near the Newburyport grocery stores, at the other end of our small New England seacoast city. Boots that would make Nanook of the North proud. Pay major attention to where my feet are, scatter salt about hither and yon, and try to remember my former confident and carefree ice skating days.