“‘Bert, did you turn the car on yet? I’ve got the luggage ready.”
“No… I’m… didn’t you want me to do this load of laundry?”
“Yea, of course. I just… how cold is it out?”
Just me and some light ski mountain traffic, i.e. a car every 30 minutes. Rob was inside folding my undies so I took that exchange of roles and loaded the car with luggage, took out the trash, hauled Eli’s varsity litter box back into storage, kicked ice off the tires, and stood around.
And I drifted.
I thought about things that had nothing to do with anything—sucker fish, forts, varicose veins, and Otis Redding lyrics—then I thought about things like frostbite and car crashes… salt stains and heart attacks. I thought for one moment that I wasn’t under the gun—there wasn’t a schedule. The car was packed, but there wasn’t really anywhere to go.
This isn’t even real snowfall. This is a little waggling finger wave from winter, like she’s trying to be sexy. She’s plum crazy.
I went back indoors and stomped the baking soda dusting off my shoes; Eli greeted me at the door with an arched back and a desperation in his voice.
I heard what sounded like elephants running to stomp out an ember.
“Good thing I decided to come up here… you forgot a suitcase.”
So we’re not quite ready for a changing of the guards. But, in my negligence, I’m happy for those moments I scored.
Happy winter, to all you Northeastern suckers like us.