Winter returned to the Mohawk Valley last night (Tuesday, Dec 28). I could hear sleet hitting the windows when I woke up in the night. When I got up I saw the back yard was covered with snow. Well, we knew it was coming.
I had planned to go running today. For one reason, I could make a Running Commentary blog post. For another, I’m getting fatter. And for just one more, I promised myself I would run up the hill to Herkimer College before the end of 2015. Perhaps the rain would stop before I got out of work.
During lunch I left stepped outside of my place of employment briefly. Cold rain was falling and a bitter wind blew. Even more ominous for my running plans, the sidewalks were covered with ice and ice water. Yikes! I could probably talk myself into running in the cold, POSSIBLY the rain (although I don’t usually). Icy sidewalks, however, are to be assiduously avoided. I revised my plans: I would run in place on the mini-tramp while looking at a movie. I might still have a Boris Karloff flick on my DVR.
I was feeling dreadfully tired by the time I got home, but rather than have a Wuss-out Wednesday post, I was going to try. Then I saw a neighbor shoveling the snow from his front walk. The neighbors on the other side had already shoveled their walk, as had other houses. I felt I should be a responsible homeowner.
Shoveling snow is exercise, I assured myself. Were the shovels on the back deck? Yes. I went inside only long enough to put my bag down then went out and got started.
It wasn’t long before I realized that while yesterday I had worn my work shoes home, today I had sensibly changed into my sneakers. I told myself not to worry about it. Even if my feet got soaked, I wasn’t going to be out there long enough for it to matter. I would be out there maybe a half hour. Half an hour is a good amount of exercise in the middle of the week.
I started on the sidewalk. It was crunchy, iced-over snow, but it wasn’t too deep and it wasn’t too heavy. I had my reward right away when a nice lady came along walking her dog. I petted the dog and chatted with the lady. She said she had seen me walking a little white dog.
“Did you lose her?”
“Yes, she had cancer.”
She offered her condolences and I petted the dog again before they moved on. I do hope to get another dog one day, possibly in the spring.
As I continued to clear the sidewalk, a gentleman from the apartment building next door came out and started shoveling the end of their driveway. We chatted a bit about winter, commuting, and store-brand cottage cheese. This shoveling wasn’t a bad gig at all.
When I started on the end of the driveway, things got a little less fun. Between the snowplow piling more snow up and our vehicles going in and out of the driveway, the snow and ice was more stubbornly in place. I worked away with determination. I was rewarded with further conversation when the neighbor who lives on the other side came out and started shoveling their driveway.
I ended up shoveling for an hour. I did not get the whole driveway done, but I cleared enough that Steven should be able to pull in and park. I wasn’t sure I could get a blog post out of it but decided to try. You be the judge: is this better, worse, or about the same as one of my Wuss-out Wednesday posts?