When you work in the north, lots of things are different. Since you’re surrounded by snow and ice for many months of the year, you learn to make tools of them.
So, what is this? It’s a frozen lake runway. There is another nearby airport (quite a large one, actually) that’s on dry land, but here, summer float planes can become winter ski or wheel planes just off Latham Island on Great Slave Lake.
Last week, an interesting thing happened. I came home from work, dropped off my bag and proceeded to clear the latest snow deposits from my steps. For good measure, I added some salt, as there were a few small ice patches here and there.
I was looking forward to a lovely meal from my wonderful M. He was making chicken pasta with mushrooms, and the aroma, particularly upon entering from the frigid outside environs, was especially enticing.
I went inside again, dropped off the shovel and picked up the garbage to take it outside.
As I turned to go down the steps, I managed to find and slip on the only bit of unsalted ice at the head of the stairs, and slammed my teeth together as both feet went out from under me and I whacked the edge of the first step on my way down.
Sliding and banging, I managed to hit the edge of all seven of them with my back and ribs, accompanied by glancing butt hits on the stair treads.
When I came to a stop, I could tell there was some damage, but I wasn’t sure which part I should moan about first.
My M came bursting through the door, as he had heard me fall.
Back inside, I started to note the injury: bruised ribs and spine and an overall sense of having been jarred, hard, especially my teeth. And later, I discovered a broken tail bone. All things considered, it could have been worse. But the thing that sticks out the most is how I tried to grab the doorbell to save myself. What the hell was I going to do with that??
All’s well that ends well, I suppose, especially on the part that ends with my rear. I’ve always been a bit of a pain in the ass, so I guess it’s only fair that the sentiment has been returned, literally.
Happy weekend, and may you always land on your feet. 🙂
With temperatures of -42C and wind chills of -52C, it has been interesting. And I understand that a lot of North America has been whacked by a polar vortex, so apparently there’s lots of cold to go around. Polar vortex – doesn’t that sound vicious? But here, cold in February? That’s normal.
I’m used to dressing warmly – a heavy, long parka – and walking to work, but the windy conditions the last couple of mornings – with gusts up 70K – have been, well, glacial.
My eyelashes have been frosting up within seconds.
I dare not expose my cheeks, chin or nose. They might freeze and break off.
Taking a deep, unprotected breath might sear my lungs. That actually happens, by the way. If I breathe in too much cold air without some sort of scarf buffer, I will start to cough.
Going bare-handed, even for a few seconds, produces instant skin cracks. Ouch!
But, there are good things. My coffee thermos keeps my homemade mocha really hot, even though the outside of it gets really cold during my walk.
My parka is stellar.
The winter sky is a crystalline arch.
And, this weather makes me totally appreciate spring, summer and autumn. 🌸
This is a very familiar sight to me. Deep, serious winter snow. Blowing, swirling, wheeling, billowing wildly, settling uncomfortably only to be on the move again.
I find that this photo, by photographer Arthur Stanisz, captures the disquiet and restlessness of a winter storm. The mountain acts as a sort of monochromatic canvas, a supporting frame amid the curtain of darkening, louring skies.
This storm should be respected: stay inside with a good blanket and some hot chocolate.