Why Did I Move to the Sticks Again?

Ice Road Truckin’
Originally uploaded by MikeOliveri.

Sights like this are one of the few things that make me miss living in the ‘burbs, or at least living in larger towns.

The drive from my office to our second campus is six miles, and today four miles of it were covered in the ice and snow you see here. We face a double whammy: the county is low on funds and thus is low on road salt, and there is nothing in our wide-open fields to stop the wind from blowing snow across the roads.

I realize the city streets may not be ideal, either, but you’re typically going to be traveling at a lower rate of speed and at night you have streetlamps so you’re not surprised by sudden drifts.

Yes, drifts. Though a lot of the ice had melted off on the other side of town by late afternoon, driving home from karate this evening I ran into knee-high patches of snow along the center line. If there hadn’t been a steady stream of traffic to keep the snow from building up in the traffic lanes, the road would have been impassable.

It’s days like this that it would be nice to have a much shorter drive to the dojo, or be able to walk to the corner store, or to have dinner delivered. I think it’s going to be another long winter.

Now I understand why we have so many neighbors who are snowbirds.

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.

No comments

  1. Kent says:

    Be careful driving out there.

    The City just announced they will only be plowing the streets during regular business hours this winter, so, it looks like snow days ahead for a lot of people in Chicago. I hope the food delivery folks have snow tires.

  2. Noah L says:

    Now you understand why most of us folks in the sticks have trucks :P. I have to say that my hybrid works much better out here–the batteries suck at life when it’s cold, and I don’t have the clearance to get through any snow. By the way, how are your arms feeling after the 100 arm-strikes and building a snow fort? :P

  3. Mike says:

    Kent: That’s pretty stupid, because if they wait for business hours, nobody can get to work.

    Noah: If we were to get a second vehicle, it would probably be a cheap 4×4 like an older Jeep Wrangler. Something I could beat the hell out of and not care about.

    As for the arms, surprisingly, they’re fine! A hint of tenderness as I bring them in on an empty-hand armstrike, but not near what I expected.

  4. Noah L says:

    You know what that means, right? You get to up the weight! YAY!

  5. Kent says:

    Stupid indeed. It’s just another City ploy to get more money. And it’ll probably work. I really need to move to Texas.

  6. Mike says:

    I was just looking at a picture taken on a Hawaiian beach. Has me tempted to do some browsing on Realtor.com. Surely they have schools that will need techs…

  7. Mikey says:

    Only 12 miles a day, Mike? What’chu complaining about? Of course, I left that 130 mile a day winter drill behind me when I quit my day job in May…but I drove it for 23 years and it’s stuck in m head.

    Buy a Jeep Cherokee or Grand Cherokee over the Wrangler – more room for the family and the longer wheelbase (about 103 inches) works better on ice. I bought a running 1990 Cherokee this summer for $700 – it’s the next rockcrawler I’m building. They’re easy to work on, too.

    NOTE: if you buy a Cherokee get one with the inline six. If you buy a Grand Cherokee get one with a V-8. If you still want the CJ or Wrangler style…call me first. There are lots of nuances to Jeeps that you’d prolly rather know beforehand.


  8. Mike says:

    Actually, my daily commute is across the street. :) I only go out to the jr high when I need to. I commuted 120 miles a day when I started here, but then moved in close.

    If I get serious about a Jeep product, I’ll definitely be in touch. We used to have a Cherokee and I didn’t really like it, but if it’s beat up and ready to go, I don’t much care. My old man’s a Jeep guy from way back, too, but it’s been a while.