Over a week ago, Lind G. Hill’s prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday was: sap, sep, sip, sop, sup. I chose to write about sip/sap. Today I’m writing about S.E.P., and as Linda so graciously gave a link, that stands for Someone Else’s Problem, and is from the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.
Today, I was S.E.P., and my already dismal assessment about the human race was deepened.
I live in New England. It has snowed. I don’t go anywhere unless I have to because I’m unemployed, broke, and trying not to be homeless. My car has been parked since the last snow. It was parked on the end of the open row, and now it is boxed in by plow drifts, to the point where I can not open the car door. Yay. I have a good set of snow tires, but not on my car. It costs money I don’t have to install those tires, and I’m not driving anywhere.
I drive a 2001 Mustang. Rear-wheel drive. The absolute worst car ever invented to drive on snow and ice.
I have two job interviews tomorrow* and so I needed to make sure my car would both start and be able to leave the parking lot. We have not been hit by the big snowstorm that is pummeling the middle of the country. I’ve been postponing going out to save my car, because while we don’t have new snow, it is freaking cold out. We are just this far away from below zero during the daytime.
I couldn’t put it off any longer. If there was a problem I needed AAA to come out today so I can get to my interviews tomorrow.
Good news: There was no snow on the car itself. Yay for sunlight and a dark blue car. Also, the car started just fine.
Bad news: The plowed barriers were right up against my car and were a lot of ice. Heavy. I have two bad knees. I’ve always had asthma, and super cold weather is the worst for exertion, even when young and whole. I have a handicapped hanger on my front mirror. Also bad, the pavement under the car was dry and clear, but there were inches of glare ice in the wheel track areas.
I chipped out what I could. Got in the car and started the rocking back and forth process. It was very slow going. I now have less tread on at least one tire than I used to. Spin spin spin. I rocked enough that I could see where I was getting hung up. I thought I had kitty litter in my trunk, but I don’t. That must have been used last winter. Note to self. Shovel, about one shovel full, moan in pain from my knees, rest, then chip chip chip. Get in the car, rock. Get out. Shovel. Chip. Repeat.
I was doing this for well over an hour.
In that time: An older gentleman who lives in a second floor apartment directly overlooking where my car was parked, as in I could have thrown a snowball at him and hit him (if I could throw), came out onto his balcony for a smoke. As he often does. I was in the car at that time, he couldn’t see my face, but I could watch him watching me. His cigarette and entertainment done, he went back into the apartment. Come down to help? Hell no.
Three college-aged men, in good shape, also walked right past my car, each separately. Coming and going or both. One was studiously looking at his phone. Woman having a problem with her car? A neighbor? Nope nope nope.
Helping me would have taken at most five minutes from any of these people. A good push on the car to push it over one of the ice bumps would have worked. Or, someone with better knees could have shoveled the problem spot in less than ten good shovel loads.
Broad daylight. A weekend (so no one late for work). Four seemingly fit men, casually dressed, and… Nada.
People suck. They really do.
I did get out and backed into a clearer spot. Backing in is the way to go with rear wheel drive cars.
*Don’t get excited about me having two interviews. I have been having quite a few interviews for desk jobs. They all go nowhere. I’m sure [sarcasm font] that that has nothing to do with my walking with a cane.