thoughts on things

Why Michigan winters are the worst – and the best

Why Michigan winters are the worst – and the best

Here in Michigan, the land of the Great Lakes, we float through the holiday season and gaze adoringly out the window as the snow falls.

We’ve entered into that months-long stretch of frigid underworld.  On January 2, there’s some sort of cosmic shift, where what was just yesterday considered de-lovely morphs into something slightly sinister.  I’m convinced that Dante omitted a crucial circle (see meme).

Then there are the bright orange salt trucks, which hulk around spraying rock-salt on the roads and peppering any car within a 1/4 mile radius.

But that’s not all!  Over time, the salt decomposes the pavement, giving way to gazillions of potholes ranging in size from ping-pong ball to watermelon.  Can you guess what happens when your wheel meets a watermelon-pothole?

I’ll give you two guesses.

Give up?

wheel

This, friends, is my husband’s wheel, and the reason why the kids and I are stranded at home.  He’s got my rockin’ minivan, and his own car is in the shop, where they may or may not be able to “hammer it out.”  Also, there’s exhaust chugging out from beneath the car like it’s an upside-down steam engine.

So that’s great.

But you know what?  When the boy woke up at 7:30 a.m. and asked where we were going today, and I told him we were stranded, the most contended smile crept over his face.  The girl stumbled out of bed and announced she’d be staying in her jammies.  So, instead of rushing through our routines and heading out onto the tundra to run errands, we stocked up the fire and grabbed books and blankets and spent an hour reading from Maryrose Wood’s The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place: An Interrupted Tale.  If you haven’t read the series – and especially if you’re classically educating – this series is fantastic.

The kids are now finishing up their independent work, I’m writing, and pretty soon we’ll all meet for tea and maybe a movie.  Do all our days look like this?  Certainly not.  But I guess the bent wheel that led to our own Interrupted Tale forced us all to slow down to the pace I’ve been meaning for us to keep all along.



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