Last Saturday evening, late, a tremendous blast shook awake the little community of Beardmore, 40 minutes away. One of the three natural gas pipelines that run within a half kilometre of town, ruptured.
I’ve been saying we live in a challenging landscape – not hostile, just challenging. So now, in addition to tons of snow and hundreds of miles of peat bogs and gazillions of mosquitoes, we have I.E.Ds.to worry about. Incredible Ear-splitting Detonations.
Today is another challenging day. Woke up to another 4 inches of snow. No time to clear it ‘cuz I have to get to Thunder Bay. I’m taking Olga with me on this risky expedition – any travel in the North in wintertime is risky. From time to time we will be CROSSING the three ranks of natural gas pipelines. Cross your fingers.
It’s our wedding anniversary. Again. Had one last year too. They keep coming faster and faster. So I’ve promised O. a slap-up meal, complete with onion rings and all the root beer she can drink. Then we’ll go get our teeth cleaned together. It’s an annual date. Yeah, I know . . . I’m an incurable romantic.
The Beardmore blast sort of portends. It’s an “after” picture. Of me. The “before” picture is me crouched in a large conduit full of noxious fumes. I’m on pins and needles. The static electricity is building. I’m waiting for the graphic artist to deliver my book cover. Waiting for the cartographer to supply my maps. Waiting to prepare my completed manuscript for upload to Smashwords. Waiting to return from Thunder Bay with all my spouses and limbs. And teeth. The dentist will get an earful if he tries to yank one. A teeth, I mean.
So that’s the state of my union. I don’t feel quite . . . grounded.