The one thing I foolishly did not take into consideration when deciding to move to Central Ontario was the weather. I made the decision during the lovely months.. boating.. Big Chief island.. sun, sand.. summer fun. Stupid, stupid, stupid. That is like.. ONE MONTH during the year!! The rest of the time you are trapped in the icy hell known as snow shovelling.
Once again today I wake up to the drone of snowblowers and the sound of the garbage truck stuck in the snow in front of my house. Good times people. Good times.
Remember when you were a kid and you could NOT WAIT till it snowed? I remembering revelling in the first snowfall of the season…. me and my friend Julie.. 6 years old.. building a snowman on her front lawn… ah, the innocence of youth.
I procrastinated for a while.. after all, I didn’t NEED to go anywhere.. then after debating whether or not to call the snow guy to do the drive, I elected to save the $20 and do it myself. After all, it’s good exercise, right?
Usually when I shovel, I start in the back yard. I have a deck off the back door and this is the primary “in and out” door for Mocha the Wonderdog. Mocha has a love/hate relationship with the snow. She bounds into the back and proceeds to weave intricate trails and patterns throughout the yard… frolicking like .. well, something that frolicks. Then she proceeds to her hatred of the snow.. I shovel and throw said white demon powder into the pile and she jumps at it, growling, angry that these frozen tears of Satan are making her mommy work so hard.
Yeah, I am reading way too much into that. She likes to chase shit. I dig and try to avoid inadvertently whacking her in the head with the shovel. I don’t want those PETA guys on my ass.
Anyhow, today I move directly to the front… there is a lot of snow. I hate snow. (Have I mentioned that?) I have a big scoopy thing for the nasty deed….. Canadian Tire.. $40. That way I can PUSH the snow rather than lift it. I have a system.. first, I push the snow in front of my car into a pile near the fence.. creating a pathway to the backyard gate. Then I make sure I shovel and salt the front walkway (I am very considerate of the mail carrier… after all, would hate to miss that million dollar envelope from the Reader’s Digest people.. hey, somebody’s gotta win it… but I digress….)
I move the car up a bit and proceed to clear out behind the car using my handy scooping device… pushing the snow from my drive across the road and dumping it in the drive of an empty house.
Scoop one.. it is freakin’ cold. My hands have already started to lose feeling in the tips of my fingers. Scoop two.. I have obviously made a wise choice to make “getting in shape” one of my New Year’s Resolutions. It is obvious that I am not. Scoop three… I am seriously not having fun and by Scoop four I have that dry burning feeling in the back of my throat that you get from heavy mouth breathing in the cold air. Despite my extremeties freezing, I am sweating in my parka. I elect to go into the house for a little rest and warmth.
I rest for 5 minutes, put on an additional pair of gloves and get back at it. I am envious of my neighbours and their fancy snowblowers. Especially the guy who snowblows his drive with a smoke hanging out of his mouth and a beer in his hand. That’s talent.. especially at 2 in the afternoon…
Not too many people out .. most of the neighbourhood other than yours truly seem to be gainfully employed. A couple of doors down there is a guy from a service doing someone’s drive. We catch each others eyes and do the polite “smile and nod”. I continue to attempt to plow out the end of my drive, when of course, I hit ice. And proceed to gracefully slide forward, hitting myself in the stomach with the bar of the scoop and landing on my face. In front of witnesses.
Hired guy actually comes bounding over to make sure I have not cracked my skull or broken a hip. He asks if I’m ok, and I respond that as long as public humiliation is not considered serious injury, I am ok. He laughs and I notice he has all his own teeth. And he’s within my age range… and kinda cute. Gainfully employed and all your own teeth is quite a catch in this neck of the woods.
Hired guy then offers to give me a hand as he is pretty much done at the neighbours. As Canadians we are obligated to discuss the weather and the amount of snow. Scintillating. I make sarcastic comments, he laughs. Good times.
At this point I feel it necessary to point out that I was outside for rigourous manual labour, not to pick up. Therefore I was dressed accordingly in my downfilled parka and oh so chic Old Navy toque which I believe belongs to my son. Needless to say… I am hotness personified.
So, Hired Guy and myself are enjoying the comraderie of those who shovel.. It doesn’t take us long to finish off my drive as he is, after all, a professional. Once done, I thank him again for his helpfulness and for not mocking me too severely when I wiped out. To which he replies:
“You’re welcome…….. MA’AM.”
I had mixed feelings. Beat him to death with a snow shovel, or drag him into the house to look at the Facebook photos of me in a kilt so he could see what I REALLY looked like…??
DUDE, SERIOUSLY….. We are like, pretty much within the same age range!!!! However, now that I look at you, you really aren’t that cute. And you appear to be kind of dumb. (Yes, my ego feels better…)
However, I did neither. As he stood there ….looking like he maybe expected a tip or something…. I responded in my best old lady voice…”well, you have a good day, SONNY” and me and my snow scoop went to clear the back yard with Mocha the Wonderdog.
Fuck. It’s snowing again.