I had every intention of grabbing a snow shovel to keep in the car before I left home that Sunday morning. You know what they say about good intentions. In this case, the road to church was paved with mine.
Driving happily west on Lorne Avenue, my car suddenly began doing its own thing, as though my steering wheel and brakes both forgot their life’s purpose at once. In what felt like slow motion, my vehicle slid into the left lane, then performed a complete one-eighty. It may have kept twirling like one of those Olympic figure skaters if it hadn’t skidded so far into the snowbank that my tires wouldn’t budge. Why, oh why, had I forgotten my shovel? That’s when it dawned on me that I had also—probably—forgotten to engage my ABS traction control. The nice lady behind me, whom I’ll call Good Samaritan Number One, saw the whole thing. She stopped and rolled down her window.
“You’re just going to keep spinning, honey,” she said.
“Got a shovel?” I asked.
“No, but my friend lives just around the corner. I’ll go get him. Hang on.”
While I waited, I called Hubby who was still home but leaving for work any minute. “Help is on the way and I’ll call you when I get out,” I said. “Then I’ll just come home. I don’t want to go anywhere without a shovel.”
A fellow in a truck came along and stopped. I’ll call him Good Samaritan Number Two. He dug around in the back of his truck. “My shovel’s buried in snow. I’ll run home and get another one.”
Pretty soon Samaritan Number One returned, but with no shovel. She’d found her friend still in his pajamas and not particularly enthused about joining our snow party. “But he’s coming,” she said.
Then Samaritan Number Two returned, with a teenager whom I’ll call Good Samaritan Number Three. Shovel in hand, he followed his dad’s instructions about where to pick away at the hard-packed snow behind my front tire. About that time, I realized someone was also shoveling near the back tires. Samaritan Number One’s friend had shown up with the shovel. I’ll call him Good Samaritan Number Four. He advised me to place my floor mats behind my wheels for traction. That was a new one to me, but I did it.
Samaritans Number Two, Three, and Four then lined up along the front of my hood and pushed while I put the car in reverse and stepped on the gas. Voila. I was free of the snowbank and back on the street.
Thanking everyone profusely, I gathered my floor mats and threw them in the car. Back in my seat, I took a deep breath and looked at the clock on the dash. It was only 10:58. Maybe I should carry on to church. I’d only be a couple of minutes late. Or would have been, except for a long train. While waiting for that to pass, it hit me. Not the train. A thought. I hadn’t called Hubby. Maybe I was more rattled than I thought. I put the car in park and sent him a quick text.
Arrived at church, found a seat, joined the singing. Congratulated myself for being there and not wimping out when my normal response would have been to go home shaken and crying. Maybe what isn’t killing me really is making me stronger.
Wait. What if Hubby didn’t check his text messages? I pulled my phone from my purse. Sure enough, he’d tried to call once and texted once. I stepped into the lobby and called home. He had not received my text. Huh. Oh well. All’s good.
It wasn’t until that evening I realized I had “texted” to our landline.
-Carry a shovel in the car.
-Don’t forget to turn on the ABS.
-Never text to your landline.
- Floor mats can be used to gain traction when placed up against your tires.
-Thank God for Good Samaritans!