Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Getting To School

After 19+ inches of snow on Sunday and a day of clearing away yesterday, the kids returned to school today.  Our journey to school began with a 30 minute wait for the bus.  We spent half of it waiting inside, but when I called the bus company for an ETA we went out when the bus should have arrived. She had gotten stuck on a side street (some are still being cleared) and was running late.  However, the ETA was inaccurate, too.  The rest of the week, we'll fully wait inside and Hummingbird's bus driver will stop and wait for her and the other kids to come out of the house.

Since she was so late getting off, Bumble Bee was left inside to get herself ready.  She is no where near as busy as a real bee.  So, I returned about 5 minutes before we should have left to find her still undressed and needing to brush her teeth.  Luckily, I had packed both lunches last night.  I hurried her along and we headed out about 5 minutes later than I intended.

As we set out, I told her we would look for the clearest paths to take for speediness-sake.  With that we headed straight north because the hospital in that direction is always perfectly plowed.  A block later, we should have turned, but Bumble Bee wanted to walk past our favorite statue of Saint Aloysius.   Despite running late, I had to take a quick snap shot.  The girls like to visit the Saint in the summer when he's surrounded by flowers and the fountain at his foot is flowing.  I usually sit on a bench, while they dip their fingers in the fountain (a few kids even fell in when they were toddlers -- super funny!).  Today, snow covered everything.  Only the tops of the bench backs showed a wee bit.

After that brief stop, we hurried along our way sticking to the sidewalks that were best cleared, heading past the library, then... what's that?  Is that the TARDIS on someone's balcony?  Really, I've never seen this boxy blue structure before, and we pass this way on a regular basis.  Late or not, I had to stop for one more photo.

We continued down mostly clear sidewalks until Bumble Bee asked if we could take the street that's "not quite an alley." This street is still a brick street that sits aside what used to be raised train tracks but is currently being transformed into an urban trail for pedestrians and cyclists. "Oh, okay," I agreed.  We were practically to school so one mess block would be fine.  As we approached I spied a garbage truck that was blocking the street and making no signs of moving.  Stuck... in the way?  Nope, there's enough space for us to squeeze by.  So, we did.  The single sidewalk was pristine, white snow.  The street itself showed sings of foot traffic and automobiles.  A second garbage truck idling, stuck against the trail wall illustrated the utter futility of trying to pass this street by car! (After 2 hours the second truck had been freed, but not the first.)

Only about 5 minutes late, we walked into the warm school and parted ways.  I headed off to reward myself with coffee and a donut while I killed some time (I had to return to help with lunch, but it takes too long to walk to school, back, out, and back again).  Everything seemed pretty ordinary as I made my way to the donut shop, until I caught sight of a pirate snowman.  If he didn't look so threatening, I might have been tempted to steal his peanut butter cup hat!  It would have been so yummy frozen...

We try to vary our walk to school to make it more exciting.  Today was certainly the most entertaining walk this year.

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