Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Walk Like a Penguin

"Hold my hand and I'll help you across the parking lot", my friend said to me as she gently grabbed hold of my forearm and tried to remain patient.

I was a teen.  My teammates and I were leaving the junior high gymnasium, where I had just finished playing in a crappy basketball game.  It was a damp, cold night, and the sky was full of freezing drizzle. 

and I was STUCK!

Stuck, in the middle of the parking lot, which was covered with a half inch thick glistening layer of smooth, solid ice. My parents were waiting for me in the car, which was warming up on the other side of the lot.  To get there, I had to walk across the ice, approximately 75 feet. My fingers were dug deep into a half rotten fence post I'd managed to cling to, and I wasn't planning to let go anytime soon. I felt sick to my stomach.

After 10 minutes of encouragement from my friend, I eventually made my way to my parents' car, half in tears, half crab-walking, pathetically scooting across the ice with  my friend's help. 

Flash forward 13 years later:  I still whimper and feel like throwing up when I have to walk on a slick surface. I've considered keeping a bag of salt in my car for those wintry days when I pull into an icy parking lot at work or the grocery store - you know, so i could toss a few handfuls out in front of me, make a path.  I invested in a pair of Ugg-like knockoff boots (which are black and totally ugg-ly!) to wear all winter long, which I change out of when I reach the safety of my office.  There, I take my boots off, set them aside to dry, and apply high heels. (Why do I not mind walking in heels when I'm afraid of falling while walking on ice? I'm not sure; it's just another one of those great woman mysteries.)

Nothing ever happened to me to create this fear; I'm just terrified of walking on ice!

I cry, I squeal, I sob.  Sometimes, I crawl on all fours to get across a patch of ice, which completely embarrasses the living daylights out of my husband when we're out in public. 

One time (at the age of 21), I crab walked across 5th Avenue in Huntington, the highly traveled four lane that intersects with Hal Greer Boulevard and surrounds the Marshall University main campus. My husband (then fiance) probably second guessed our future wedding when that whole situation occurred.

With or without treaded boots, I will never feel safe walking on ice. 

It's a little early for winter stories, but I can't resist a fun writing prompt! I'm linking up @Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop - head over and give one of her prompts a whirl!

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Rebekah said...

This is so funny! I hate walking on ice. I freak too. But where we're living, I wont be around snow/ice for a while!

flip flops and pearls said...

Love the crab walking!! LOL

I have to say snow and ice is something we never see here, lol, gotta love alabama!

Hope your weekend is FAB!!
xoxo Daph

Crazy Shenanigans said...

I'm bummed I missed that crab walking incident! Hopefully this winter you won't have to worry about it too much!

Brittany said...

I just about peed my pants!

I bet you're not looking forward to winter! lmao!

I love ice, I always fling myself across it like a little kid!


funfunfun said...

Following from bloghop...would love to have you follow back!

Tarunita said...

I just hate walking on ice. said...

I have no problem with ice, but my son is totally slick walking phobic... so I can somewhat relate to your story - stopping by from SITS to say hi!