The Better Half
Lessons in life, as life moves along whether you realize it or not: When it's so darned cold the fog freezes out of the sky, even cloth gloves can be a Good Thing to have handy when you're moving things about. ...to say nothing of while blading.
Another: it is not a good idea to go blading after church but before breakfast; the reserves that would kick in a few decades ago do not appear to be as readily available. ...a new meaning to 'uphill, upwind, in the snow...'
I know this one already; I just get to experience it once again: When your right hand is away, people who normally wouldn't call either of you will suddenly remember that you can do something for them. ...and as expeditiously as possible.
City government is not your friend (yeah, still torqued). ...and with the possible exception of the city where I reside. 'Course, we do pay some serious taxes there...
Lacking a coordinated approach, immediate and extended family members can actually have more medical appointments on one day than cars available for transport.
Good grief, it's Monday...
Warming weather here; we almost made it to sixty yesterday. Still, that was good enough for blading in shorts and a sweatshirt <g> (for those on the East Coast and points South). ...and I'm hoping the weather will hold for the next week or two: while I'm getting more exercise walking from my car to the office (over the railroad tracks, uphill both ways), I'll need the endorphins supplied by the longer workout to help balance out the workday.
Monday went well enough; the parking situation wasn't impossible and no one was looking too hard for my missing assistant. Janeen changed her voicemail message before she left and today I set her "Out of Office Assistant" in Outlook to let people know she wouldn't be returning any mail for a bit. That may hold the wolves off for a day or two.
What I had forgotten was that it's right after the first of the month; and today, the statements arrived along with the rest of the payables. Good grief, what a stack to sort through. But, even with all that and the other distractions of the day, I still managed to get all of her queued orders off, my Monday stuff off and still get some research in of a project or two.
All in all, a decent start to the week...
Please excuse a bit of bitterness from an ex-medic, but now and again I share the frustration of the local CHP officers: you watch them on TV saying, "If you can't see, you can't stop in time!", or giving out the three second rule, or telling people how to read fog markers to judge distance...
The figures will vary slightly depending on whether they add in the second wreck a mile to the south (twenty four vehicles, ten patients), but while I was driving into town from the north in clear skies, others coming from the south were not so lucky: sixty-seven cars, three big rigs, thirty-seven patients, two fatalities...
"Tie goes to gross tonnage." "The one with the most lug nuts wins." Two maxims from driver's training here...
No, I'm not done with yesterday's frustration. ...another from that wreck died yesterday. ...and there's just no reason; if the fog is that bad, slow down or get off the road. Now! Yeah, I likely don't have any local readers here, and maybe you don't have tule fog where you are, but listen up: when the local Highway Patrol doesn't want to be out in your weather, it's a clue...
...and someone on Highway 99 the other day didn't have one. ...and people died. ...and yeah, it bothers the heck out of me; there are usually warnings with the weather and roadway reports on the television and radio. ...and plenty of stories in the paper. ...and it's no news to valley residents from Sacramento to Bakersfield.
...and the cure is simple: slow down. ...or get off the road. Back in my fire service days, my station assignment was seventy miles away, out in the county. If the fog was too thick, I'd end up calling the on-duty guy on my CB radio (no cell phones in those days) to let him know he'd be sleeping in the next time he had to relieve me as I made up the time he'd be covering for me. ...and he preferred getting off a little late rather than not having his relief show up. ...ever. I learned one clue real early the first year: if I passed more than one semi pulled off McMullin grade, it was time to grab some real estate as soon as I could and just hang with them for a while.
If you followed the link to the local paper's article yesterday, they gave you a nice overhead shot of one part of the wreck. That picture was taken several hours after the main event as they were clearing the cars away from both ends of the show. One of the fatal vehicles is in the right-middle. If you're up for carnage, there's a side shot in this article; no, not the first picture, the second. Umm, if you have an active imagination, I don't suggest looking at it too long. ...and if you don't have much of an imagination, a local reporter was 'right there' and wrote an excellent description of the events...
How do I know that's an 'excellent description'? Easy, it's the same words I heard over the years when I worked those scenes. ...and the same ones I've used to describe things when I've been working the tail end of one (much better to work the head end: no one's coming at you from that direction).
Yeah, that was a longish week for a variety of reasons... But, hey; I made it through and it's Friday night and the opening ceremonies for the Olympics were more than I'd hoped they'd be. I'm so cynical about the hype surrounding most productions that I usually just blow them off. I didn't this time and I'm glad I watched the show. If you didn't, I won't bother to recap for you; but if someone taped it, it's worth a watch.
Still kickin' back. I think this is the first Saturday since last summer that I didn't wake up with a list a mile long to handle. Not that there weren't things to do; but for once, nothing was of "Above A-List" priority. Gee, nothing but the basic high-level stuff.
...and my answer to that is always easy: It's not a crisis yet; time to plan for a nap!. Actually, that's what I did: handled breakfast; caught up on my reading (almost a full week's worth of newspapers); and napped in the easy chair. That tired me out, so I just headed off to bed and slept for a time.
I still made it up in time to blade, just so I could say I hadn't laid around all day <g>. ...and the family? Well, the boys spent the day outdoors for a change and Shelley caught as much of the Olympics as she could (I'd almost forgotten her fascination with them).
All in all a quite day around the household...
Whooeee... I just don't know what to think about the weather here in Central Cal... Last week I was blading in full sweats and gloves and wishing for another layer; yesterday it was shorts and a T-shirt; today I really could have gotten by in shorts and a tank top. ...and tonight, there's a fire going in the fireplace while we watch the Olympics! What's next? Oh, yeah; it's probably time to think about the pool <g>.
C-ya' next week...
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