The calendar has flipped around, and even though I was beginning to fear we lived in Narnia (always winter and never Christmas), it appears we are about to be sprung. Unfortunately it’s not going to melt away quietly and turn overnight into a green, song-filled paradise. Oh no. First it’s going to rain-sleet on us and maybe flood.
This is unfortunate for so many reasons. First, for the returning birds: red-winged blackbirds, killdeer, the kestrel, robins, phoebe, song sparrows–singing!–don’t exactly have a lot of open ground or insects (though this being Maine, they’ll be out any minute). Second, the garage, and the river now diverted around it, all rely on the ditch to hold. Third, our driveway is a mess. The shoulders are a mite soft, you might say, and they need all the encouragement they can get to harden up.
I didn’t exactly encourage them when I sank the minivan up to its axles this week. Younger son tried shoveling and I rocked gently to avoid spinning us in any deeper. Several folks offered help, for which we are grateful. Ultimately, though, this was a job for a tractor.
Our neighbor Dennis chugged down the way and cheerfully twitched us out as the after glow faded behind the tree line.
The following day, the ruts, now seemingly spring-fed lakes, became bird baths. The blackbirds and grackles took turns splashing and wading before evening’s cold skimmed the ice back over.
This little misadventure may well lead to the most expensive pizza we’ve ever had. It all started because someone bought inedible gluten-free pizza crust. That set in motion a run for real pizza, which in turn led me to back into the muck. Now we can’t open the passenger front door–a slightly twisted frame?–and wonder if it’s time to start car shopping. I blame it on low blood sugar and a well-founded fear of bad pizza. Though perhaps I also should fear the mud.