Friday, March 08, 2013

Winter's Tone

This was a day that only soup could heal.

Winter will not go without a fight and the grumpy old man proved that point today by dumping a few inches of snow on our fair city just to show us all who’s still in charge.

I was equally ornery, though, and elected not to wear my boots. I had worn them once already this week in response to what turned out to be a false alarm, so I decided that I wouldn’t clunk around the office all day again in those clodhoppers despite the obvious presence of snow right outside my door.

I spent a good part of the day at work in damp socks thinking about my lonely boots sitting in a closet back home with nothing to do.

Snow always looks great when you’re inside. I loved being outside in the snow when I was a kid, but that fascination has faded with age.

I got a nice, warm view of the inclement weather during a meeting at my supervisor’s office this morning.

I looked down Broadway and saw everything slowing down, as the snow forced this place of ceaseless noise and endless activity to become as still as a country lane.

There was a flash coming from inside the bowels of the MTA construction project across the street and I looked over for a quick peek.

A welder was fusing two various parts of the vast structure together and the only sign of his presence were the sudden bursts of sparks flaring up in the dark interior. I couldn’t help thinking how different this person’s life was from mine.

I worked inside an office all day in front of a computer while this man—or woman--works outside in all kinds of weather wielding fire.

Almost Done

His ancestors erected the structure I inhabit most days of the week and now he’s helping add another piece to this city’s constantly changing landscape.

I’ve got so little in common with him and yet I felt I could reach out across the street and shake his hand.

I stayed in the office all day and the only exercise I got was climbing the stairs to the next floor to use the men’s room. One of the toilets backed up in my usual place and gallons of unsavory water spread out over the floor.

It looked like the building had been torpedoed by a phantom U-boat, and I had to fight the urge to shout, “women and children first!”

The sun decided to make a late day appearance just to give us some hope that spring would soon be here. But I still wasn’t free of the dampness.

When I got sat down on the bus for the ride home I discovered all too late that the seat was soaking wet.

Even though the precipitation had ceased outside, water was somehow leaking into the bus and the only thing slowing it down was a balled up paper towel that was quickly turning to pulp.

I forgot about my boots and started thinking of a scuba suit. Too bad that welder wasn’t around. I could’ve gotten him to fix the leak.

We’re supposed to get warmer weather for the next week, but I suspect we’re not quite down with winter yet. It’s all right, though. I know we will be soon enough.

Now it’s time for soup.

4 comments:

Bijoux said...

This post completely relays my feelings on cold weather. I bought a pair of Skechers that look like men's shoes that I wear in place of boots when I go places. I keep the boots for just shoveling snow!

It is humbling to think about the jobs other people do in all sorts of awful conditions, that end up benefiting us. I once toured the Ford plant and came out of there with a headache, temporary hearing loss, and a nose full of black soot.

Rob K said...

Yes, Bijoux, you're certainly right about that humbling feeling and that tour of the Ford plant must have been quite an experience.

Lower Manhattan is currently one big construction site, with the new Trade Center, subway station and hotel all going up within a three block radius. These men and woman are out there every day, no matter what the weather is like.

Take care!

Ron said...

Rob, truly buddy, your writing is always such a JOY to read!

The way you described things in this post gave such clear and vivid pictures...

"I looked down Broadway and saw everything slowing down, as the snow forced this place of ceaseless noise and endless activity to become as still as a country lane.

A welder was fusing two various parts of the vast structure together and the only sign of his presence were the sudden bursts of sparks flaring up in the dark interior."

Brilliant!

And yes, I know what you mean about leaving your boots at home because I've done the same thing here. So by the time I got to work, my socks were wet and soggy; making me chilled to the bone. I don't mind being cold, however, it's when I'm damp and cold...that's what gets to me.

We're getting warmer weather here next week as well. In fact, today it's beautiful!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend, buddy!





Rob K said...

Hey, thanks, Ron. I tried to be as descriptive as possible, so it's very gratifying to read your kind words.

Wet socks is the office version of waterboarding! Let us move on to spring! Take care, buddy!