Icy winters on Wellesley Island require traction. Last year I never set foot on ice. If I needed to go anywhere, I headed through the connected garage straight to the all-wheel drive Subaru. Needs change. Our new family member, a three-year-old golden Aussie mix, requires daily walks. Her enthusiasm for sprints jeopardizes the biggest safety objective in my life: DON’T FALL.
With the first dusting of snow, I pulled on vinyl-soled boots. When the muddy trails froze, I skidded trying to keep pace with Goldie. I ordered heavy duty snow boots that arrived just in time for the December blizzard. The new calf high boots cinch tight with Velcro and have soles like winter tires. Because Goldie’s furry feet gather ice balls like glass marbles, I purchased a set of boots for her as well. We were all set.
Then a slight warm-up compacted the snow. Freezing rain sealed everything in a glossy coat of varnish. Recurring layers of ice and snow transformed into the slickest substance on the earth. I didn’t dare step out the front door.
I now have Ice Trax, flexible straps that stretch over boots with nine metal spikes to puncture the ice. I’m as sure-footed as a mountain goat.
Winter days indoors are just as slippery in their own way. I wake up early, get Goldie out, complete the morning tasks, and sit down with a cup of coffee. That’s when I lose traction. I spend the next hour on the crossword, scroll through Pinterest boards, or watch the birds devour seeds. I need to get a grip on the day.
I added a day planner, sort of like boots with heavy treads. It’s not just another calendar, but a place to make to-do lists. All my desired accomplishments can be recorded and checked off as completed. It works on days when items are Empty the dishwasher or Call to schedule an eye exam. If I’m expected to show up someplace, I can navigate that. But as soon as the list includes something like Organize the closet or Paint the ceiling, I skid.
Honestly, how important is a clean closet or fresh paint? After all, my decades are numbered…with very low digits. The to-do list works more like dis-traction. Forget tiresome chores. The decade of 70 demands fulfillment.
I’ve been wrong about life’s traction. Now is the time to get off the navigable trails and get out on the ice. Forget safety, danger lurks within every day. This is not about fall prevention, it’s about standing up for final chances. I have a manuscript to polish, a website to launch, and an author’s platform to build. That’s the worst ice storm I can imagine.
I’m reviving PowerAgers as my Ice Trax for life. I hope you join me.