Snowfall in late December. Lovely thing. We haven't reached that point when we loathe the mere mention of snow. That's mid January. After more back breaking shoveling and an extra slip on the ice hiding below a thin layer of fresh powder. Driving as the snowfalls is not as much fun. And I encourage anyone who is at home while the snow is falling today to stay there. Enjoy the snowfall with hot cocoa or perhaps a nice warm adult beverage, something mulled with spices.

I remember with some measure of fondness my first drive in snowfall. I was a senior in high school, and was working swim meet at the school on a Saturday morning, I want to say it was February, but I really don't remember. The year was 1993. I had to depart the meet to get a haircut, which had been planned before I was asked to help out managing the times and lane assignments for the semifinals and finals. I had mad Microsoft Excel skillz back in the day, the product of too much time in the computer lab. Driving, still a symbol of personal liberty to your humble correspondent, had the exhilarating joy of youthful independence. The car, romanticized through the foggy lens of memory, responded as if it could read my mind. It wasn't quite my car, at that point, but the acquisition of a new family vehicle was not far away. Driving as the snow fell that morning was rather different from today. I slowed too quickly heading around a curve, felt the car slip into a skid, and remembered to turn into it, righting the vehicle in nearly an instant. My heart thumped in my chest the rest of the way. It took gripping the wheel to still the tremors in my hands. Ahhhh, sweet adrenaline.

Today didn't go so well. Slowing too quickly again, this time on an interstate, my car, for whom distance of time has not yet elevated it to a treasured place, skidded and slipped again. I turned the wheel every which way I could, into the skid, only to feel the skid reverse, and with it also my hands. Anticipating an impact from another vehicle equally unable to slow on the slick pavement, I sat helpless as the car spun and skidded until it was perpendicular with the traffic pattern. Thankfully the impact that did arrive (a jersey barrier that divides the interstate) came at a speed insufficient to inflate the airbags, insufficient to harm the vehicle more than a bowed out fender panel, but plenty sufficient to scare the excrement out of me. I tapped out a hasty I'm okay text message to Mrs. TetreaultVision and surveyed the damage. The car started right back up and again gripping a steering wheel to steady my hands I drove the final two miles to the office. The car runs fine, no worse than it ran when I left this morning for work. They were but flurries then, and I thought I'd out drive the worst of it, going eastbound after all.  Oh well.

Happy New Year!