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White Is in the Winter Night...
[Misc] Flowers
I think a reasonable person would believe that a four hour Wills and Trusts exam would definitely be the low point of the day. Turns out that the reasonable person would be dead wrong (take that, legal standards)! After getting my apartment together, I decided to head back to my parents'. It's normally about a two and a half hour drive, maybe a bit more. Not today.

First, there was an accident right after where I get on the interstate, so I had to backtrack and take another route to get on after. (Did I mention I decided to start at 6PM? Right in the middle of rush hour.) That probably adds about half an hour. Then traffic is heavy for a long time. I had planned on getting an espresso machine last week, but my mom's fall messed that up. I stopped in the Starbucks that's pretty much at the midpoint. The good news was that it was 20% off, plus it already been marked down and I got another 10% off with my card. When it was all said and done, I got the espresso machine, an accessories package (thermometer, steaming pitcher, etc), and a bottle of syrup for about 42% of the entire retail cost of the machine. (And that's including tax.) The barista was more exited than I was, because they apparently get rewards for selling stuff. Cool.

They got it all together and one of the guys gave me a crash course in making drinks (hint: always keep the milk steamer toward the top of the milk to aerate it because it's gross otherwise and always make the espresso immediately before adding it to the milk, because it has a very short life and turns bitter very quickly). That probably took about half an hour.

When I went in Starbucks, I noticed it was possibly starting to snow. When I came out, it was definitely snowing. It was a wet, packing snow and heavy enough to really mess with visibility. Plus, they weren't working the roads, so it was a mess. (There were a couple of times where I felt like I lost contact with the road.) What made it bad was the heavy traffic. What made it worse were the big trucks who were driving recklessly. I know they're loaded heavy and I know they have to get a run for the hills, but if they're almost running over cars to get them out of the way, it's a problem.

To give you an idea of how bad it was, it took me about an hour and fifteen minutes to travel about sixty miles on the interstate. If you figure that you're going 60MPH, that it would take about an hour. I usually keep it around 80, except in construction zones (the speed limit in Kentucky is 70 on interstates and if you're stopped going ten miles or less on the interstate in a rural area, you can't get points). So, it should have taken less than an hour, definitely.

At some points, I was going 25-35MPH. I drive a lot and I'm pretty confident, but this was pretty bad. I wasn't scared, but I really wasn't enjoying it.

Anyway, since a picture's worth a thousand words, here's what my car looked like when I got home:

Here's a close-up of the mirror. See how thick the snow is?

(And yes, it's an SUV. And while it's not so good for the environment, it's pretty useful if you work around animals and need to go off the paved road on a regular basis. For what it's worth, I'm definitely looking into getting a hybrid when I replace it.)

If you're wondering, the title's from this song from Enya's Christmas album. It played several times on the way home, because I had just downloaded it and was listening to my "Recently Added" playlist on my iPod and was too focused on the road to look down to change it. I kinda like it.

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Holy crap!

Espresso machine though, cool. I've tried it before, but uhm, it's too strong for me I think. I'm such a little kid, I don't drink much coffee either.

Driving in the snow seems yucky. I haven't done it yet, and it scares me to think about it. I'm glad you can do it though. Well obviously, most people can, but I know a few who just get so nervous.

You're killing the environment!!! OH NOES. Not really, but hummers DO piss me off for some reason... (probably the fact that the "hair hub" on campus that charges $80 for haircuts uses nothing but hummers for no reason).

I wish I had a car. Wishing idly doesn't do much though, haha. And I don't wish to have one in winter.:p

Oh, I really like Enya too.:)
I couldn't remember that particular song, but I do have that album. Yay.

I don't care that much for espresso, but I like lattes, especially those with syrup in them. Cinnamon dolce latte. Mmmm...

It wasn't fun, but it's like driving in any bad situation. If you stay calm, you're fine. Unfortunately, a lot of people seem to freak out and drive more erratically in bad weather.

Hummers. *rolls eyes* Although, my person pet peeve is the Cadillac Escalade pickup truck. Now, this may show my background, but a pickup truck is a work vehicle. You take it out and you throw stuff in the back and you drive it over rough ground and generally make it earn it's keep. You don't just drive it around and keep it all pretty and shiny. If you're going to do that, why get a pickup truck?

Cars are very much a necessity around here. There's absolutely no form of mass transit at all. I'd love to see a good train system in the U.S.

It's a good album. I'm very happy with it.

Do lattes have coffee in them? I'm not trying to be smart, I'm seriously confused by coffee terms. I didn't know what a frappucino was until two years ago. I drink lattes and frappucinos though.

Really? The sliding part seems scary though. That's about it for me, so I told mom I'll be a summer driver.:P

Are you serious? I didn't know those existed. Sounds like the perfect frat boy car. Pickup trucks are badass in snow with 4-wheel drive. When I went home before Thanksgiving, the roads were COATED in snow by the time we got back to my place since that's where the storm was coming from. He put on 4-wheel drive and it was like there was nothing on the ground. But I couldn't ever drive one, I need a tiny, tiny car. Even then, I'm still at the point where I'm scared to park next to other cars. >->

YEAH ENYA! I should hook you up with some of my easy listening stuff sometime. I have a good bit you'd like.:D

Lattes are steamed milk with a shot of espresso on them. (More for bigger drinks.)

I didn't actually slide last night, it just felt like I would a couple of times. Once, though, during finals week, it snowed but I was afraid not to go to the final. As I was coming in, I hit the brakes and my car did a 360 turn. That was a bit scary. (The professor said after I got there that I could have made it up.)

You get used to bigger cars, more you drive them. They're still a pain sometes, though. Although the worst thing ever was when I tried to parallel park an ambulance.

Are you serious? Gosh, I must seem so silly, lol. But yeah, make me a delicious latte and give me it.D:

You seem to have a really nice vehicle for the weather, so I'm not surprised. But thank goodness you were okay after that one event.:(

Oh, that's right- you used to work in medical things, right? For me, big cars just scare me, but I guarantee you are right, of course. I failed maneuverability(where you drive in cones and then pull back out- figured I'd explain since all my PA friends have no idea what in the world Ohio is about on their driving test) in a medium-sized car so I guess I'm just less than stellar at driving yet. I'm just a little kid at it still, since I got my license finally last summer.:P

What was your state's driving test like, out of curiosity?

I'm trying to remember everything. We drove a route and I think the big things were we had to do a three-point-turn (that's where you stop, back into a side street, and pull out) and a parallel park. (That was my weakness...I had to take it three times, though in my defense, on the first one, it wasn't even a legal parking space.) We also had to come to a smooth stop (very subjective) and back up fifty feet. There was probably other stuff, but I can't remember. No cones, though.

The cones thing is kind of like a 3-point-turn thing. I remember the horror when I first failed, haha. But we didn't have to parallel park or nothin, just do street driving. I only got 5 points off there, but aced the street driving overall. PA's test is the same as yours. Ohio is just a freak state. I'm convinced.

3 times, huh? My friend also took it 3 times, but she did some messed up stuff, like blowing a stop sign the first time, and some other stuff. Boosting your confidence on my safety, she taught me how to drive when I was starting out, haha. I am a SAFE driver though, speed limits and all. Speeders hate me.:(

Parallel parking is the devil.

I'm sure you're perfectly safe.

I've never done it. Uhhhh

Yeah, I'm SO safe. Like the kid playing Outrun in my driver's ed videos. Oh lordy.

Oh, by the way, when are we permitted to read the "Sweet and Far Thing" book?:P

I actually had to do it on a regular basis a few years ago.

If you want, you can start now. I need to finish my final by tomorrow night, then I'll start.

Oh, forget that. You know I'd never leave you behind.:P

I just needed something to get my mind off more than one thing. It just changes what I'll do tonight. I'll watch Marimite.:)

Patience is key, or some crazy nonsense like that.

This is Kitaro, it's easy listening, and very good.


Use it for your paper! Or not, then you might start hating the music?:P

Thanks! I'm downloading right now.

Very familiar sight, well at least before last year when we did have snow the whole winter.

If you're wondering, the title's from this song from Enya's Christmas album. I really liked "Trains and winter rains" from this album. But well I love everything created by Enya :)

We only get weather like that a few times a year, which is better and worse. It's better because we generally have milder weather, which is great. It's worse because we're never really prepared for bad weather, so roads get bad fairly quickly and people go crazy. If there's the slightest chance of snow, people rush out to the store to buy milk and bread.

Enya does have great stuff. I like how a lot of the songs are winter-themed, rather than Christmas-themed, so I can listen to them longer.

And if I don't talk to you on IM, happy birthday!!!

It's worse because we're never really prepared for bad weather that reminds me that here winter every year comes so unexpectedly for the city authorities that every snow fall causes giant traffic jams :)

Thank you!!!

It's just funny to me, because while we don't get bad weather frequently, we do get it at least once or twice a year. Why on earth don't they have a plan in place for it?

Driving home that night, I was honestly thinking that I should figure out exactly who was in charge of making sure the roads were worked and make campaign donations to their opponents next election, regardless of party. :-)

Did you have a good birthday?

Probably they also hope that bad weather won't happen this year :)

Yeah, I've got very warm congrats from my colleagues at work. They even gave me a book about Japan (I have the reputation, huh :) ). And I'll celebrate my b-day with different friends today in the evening and tomorrow and on thirsday and on friday :))

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