Sunday, 5 February 2012
You don't have to be mad to work here (or try and get to work), but it helps!
As I write, along with others around the UK, our garden and indeed the area where I live, is swathed in a blanket snow. Along with no doubt quite a few others, I have also been unable to get to work. I had good intentions of trying to get there, and had of course seen and heard the weather warnings which remain in place throughout the country. Accordingly then, the alarm was set for 10 minutes early, with my car facing forwards rather than backwards, allowing me to drive straight out - or so I thought. When I looked out the window just after 7pm last night and saw a light dusting on the roof I was not too worried, but then I woke up again just after 1am and saw several inches, I was.
By the time the alarm went off just before 6am, we had around 8 inches of the stuff and it was still coming down. Against my better judgement I jumped out of bed and into the shower, and got dresed as quickly as I could, while assembling an emergency travel kit (sleeping bag, water, food etc) just in case. Coran went outside to start removing the snow while I did this. By the time I joined him outside the snow had stopped, and he was making good progress with the car, if not the driveway. I telephoned work to let them know that I was attempting to make it in, but was not too hopeful and that there may be another call, all the while trying not to feel too guilty about letting them down (bear in mind that I was the only housekeeper rostered for duty today, and a nursing home is of course no ordinary workplace - residents need feeding and taking care of no matter what the weather).
We eventually got the car started and off I went - up to the main road to see what the state of play was there. So well, so good, except that when I got there of course I had to stop to make sure it was clear, and that was when I got stuck. No ammount of revs would free me. So into reverse gear I went and tried another way, only to get stuck again. By this time Coran, who had been following me on foot, had caught up, and so being an older and more experienced driver than I, hopped into the drivers seat and after a lot of hoo-ha, finally managed to reverse all the way back home, and then back round to where we had got stuck in full throttle.
This time he managed to hit the main road, in the manner of speaking, running and so off we went galiantly setting out to clean those residents rooms and wash their dirty clothes. The problem was, that none of the roads had been gritted, and as we were the only ones to be out and about (and that stupid) so early in the morning, so the road was covered in what I can only describe as thick white slush. There was one motorcylist trying like us to get somewhere, but he soon gave up, and pushed his bike along the road. By the time we got up the roundabout, slipping and sliding all over the place, we reluctantly decided to do the same thing. I then had to phone work and tell them the bad news.
As I write, the skies are beginning to clear, so I am hopeful for tomorrow, and there has been no more of the white stuff - yet, but of course, a lot can change. My car has been left up by the main office in readiness for tomorrow, and after lunch Coran and I will walk up there and try and turn it round, but other than that, all we can do it wait and hope.