Greetings, my fellow port swillers!

A couple years back, ol’ Robbo was out in the Midwest in December on biznay when he and his colleague got caught in the Quad Cities area in a ginormous blizzard.  The next day, after it had passed, we had to drive out to Des Moines for some additional depositions.  Davenport, IA to Des Moines is about, oh, 180-odd miles of interstate.  In the aftermath of the storm, we counted something close to 100 wrecks over that distance.  (It was after dark, too, so I’m sure we missed a few more.)

I was reminded of that little adventure this morning, as an Alberta Clipper descended on the neighborhood of Port Swiller Manor and began to drop moderately heavy wet snow right at the start of rush hour.   I’m not exactly sure how they go about apportioning the sanding/salting duties, but evidently whoever was in charge of the stretch of Mrs. Madison’s Road and the “Gee, Dubya!” that I normally drive had dropped the ball.  Cars spun out and in the ditch everywhere.  Not quite as spectacular as the twisted, pirouetted, mangled hulks I saw in Iowa, but enough to wake the memory.

Mrs. R was supposed to bring brekkers treats in to the Middle Gel’s chorister practice this morning, traveling along much of this same route.   After but a few minutes I called and waved her off because even my beloved Wrangler, which in 4WD has the sure-footedness of a chamois of the Alps, was beginning to display that kind of hesitant shimmy that a wicked-minded horse does just before trying it on, and we’ve discovered that the family Honda Juggernaut® does about as well in these conditions as does a brontosaurus on an ice floe.  (Mrs. R has already announced that when the lease is up she’s going back to an SUV.  And Algore can go to hell.)

As I was crossing one bridge over Complicated Run, the ol’ Jeep started to yawl more than usual.  “What? What’s got into you?” I asked.  Then I noticed that the 4WD light was not lit.  Once re-engaged, I had no more problems.  But I’ve noticed more than once in recent weeks that I seem to have thrown the lever to turn it off without being aware of it.  I put this in the same category as forgetting what gear I’m in, which also happens from time to time, particularly when I’ve a lot on my mind.  Anno Domini, I suppose.

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