Sunday, January 01, 2006

January 1st 2006

What is it about the new year that makes people stop and think and wonder about their lives and, "how I'm gonna do x, y, or z" differently/new/for the first time/never again???

I kinda wake up and do that throughout the year. Especially after far too much wine :). I guess I'm kinda weird that way, or maybe it stems from all those years in academia? I mean, well, the school year starts in August/Sept and ends in May/June. I think whoever thought up school years musta thought that the holiday break in the middle would be smashingly good; after all, if a kid gave you a crappy present, you had another whole 5-6 months to torture them for it...tee hee, or maybe that's just what I would do...

Moving on...I'm sitting on the friendly side of the window today, viewing the snowfall. Winter's finally started to make her complete appearance in the Lake Tahoe area. I'm afraid to take a picture, though. It seems every time I do, the snow STOPS and live with my description as I'm watching (don'tcha just love touch-typers) the flakes are falling in a heavy diagonal pattern, from right to left...and the wind comes in these moderate intervals to whip it around; it almost looks like a mini-blizzard.

Notice I'm not complaining about the amount, yet. It's New Year's Day and I don't have to go anywhere or do anything until January 3rd, which is AFTER they reopen HWYs 80 & 89 (I hope--closed due to MUDSLIDES) and maybe I'll only have an hour's worth of commute time to the library 9 miles away from me. Yes, you read that correctly, 9 miles an hour...

Xmas week I was stuck in traffic for 1.5 hours, trying to get to work as everyone else was trying to get to Alpine on a stick. Yesterday I had to desperately get to Truckee to mail off a job application (more on that later). In the tri-county area, Truckee is the only PO that has window service on Saturdays. It had just started to snow as Andy started the car... At this point I must remind myself to remind Andy that the NEXT time his gut tells him "let's not do this," and I say something like, "we don't have to go," that he should listen to both me and his gut.

Right, so, little Corolla had his (yeah, it's a he) studded snow tires on and we made it over Brockway Summit just before Chain control. Truckee was a mess! It took a couple unlit intersections and a train that was not moving for me to wonder why what was going on. Then I noticed the, I should write RIVER, and was mad I didn't have my little Fisher-Price camera. There were patches of broken banks and no electricity. And I know, I know, I really should know better than to trust the "neither rain nor sleet nor dead of night" or whatever Postal phrase I grew up with (just like "you can always trust police officers"...gosh, I loved Norman Rockwell, didn't you?), I thought to myself, well, at the library we're supposed to stay open even when the lights go out, and if we do, then the post office will too, right? HA HA HA HA HA HA!!!

So, we drove through really bad weather for naught. There was a little post it note with "sorry, no lights" and a HAPPY FACE on the floor of the postal office doors. Someone else had already torn it off the doors and stepped on it before I had a chance to.

And then, we were stuck. No, not in snow, no, not in flood-waters (though I thought we might have been when we drove into a Shell station to put the chains on the car. We drove through all this water and I thought, 'gosh, it sure did rain a lot' (yeah, I say gosh in my head, what of it?). Then I saw the river, RIGHT NEXT TO THE STATION, lapping over the edge of the bank, towards So, um, yeah, chains on tires we decided we'd try 89 S to Tahoe City, closed. 80 E was as well (to Reno), so back to 267 S to Kings Beach, um, closed, accident. STUCK. We did what any "local" would do, we went grocery shopping! We were not even afraid of buying items in need of refrigeration as it was a whole 30 degrees out.

I mean, they HAD to open 267, eventually, it was the ONLY ROAD we could take, anywhere! They did, we got home, I collapsed, and we had groceries and wine to help us get through another new year's eve.

I fell asleep a couple times but DID make it to midnight. And there were bursts and bangs. I think a few were actually shot guns! (Yee Haw!) Richard wrote saying there were only fireworks in Echo Park, I'm so glad. I remember being 11 years old, 5.5 miles away from his new house in my mom's 'hood, and my oh-so-not-even-close-to-being-sober-dad making me (picture his hand over mine pulling the trigger and crushing my index finger) fire his .38 into the sky...I hated New Year's Eve. Thank God for relatives in little towns in Mexico where that noise doesn't happen.

Okay, gonna go enjoy the blizzard, I mean snowfall, cuz you all in the like more eastern parts of the country get REAL snow and REAL cold weather, I know.


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