Weather &c

It’s been an interesting week. Quick replay of the last eight days:

Sunday

Off-road driving on a frozen field. Spent over an hour getting there because the directions I was given were out of date by about three years. Got to practice winter driving at unsafe speeds in borrowed RWD and FWD cars and my own AWD. Lot of fun, until something tore my left rear brake line. Got to ride home in tow truck.

Monday

Nothing to report.

Tuesday

Nothing to report.

Wednesday

Picked up the car at the shop. Tow truck driver told me it was within walking distance of the train station. Turns out “walking distance” means 3 km. In -8 °C.

Happy to be back at the wheel. Went to pick K up at work, ended up working there for a couple of hours, waiting for rush hour to pass.

Thursday

Consultation with otolaryngology specialist at newly-built regional hospital about constricted airways. CT scan showed nothing except slight septum deviation. Referring physician suggested conchaplasty. Visual inspection by specialist revealed conchahypertrophy. Was offered conchadiathermy instead of conchaplasty.

Hospital administration & assorted politicians claim hospital is the most modern in Europe. Meanwhile, doctors take notes on paper because computers don’t work, & pneumatic tubes are constantly on the fritz.

Got a little too eager on the way home and slammed sideways into a snowbank. No damage except to snow.

Started snowing in the evening.

Friday

Still snowing.

Rear brakes froze overnight. Memo to self: do not set parking brake when parking in unheated garage during the winter.

Vibration at speeds over ~50 km/h. Stopped at gas station to clear snow from inside wheels. Vibration went away.

Usual Friday evening shift at the cat shelter. Pretty quiet for once, unlike last week.

Drove home. Forgot to not set parking brake.

Saturday

Still snowing.

Rear brakes frozen.

Went to IKEA with K. Parking lot not yet cleared; parked in deep snow. Had breakfast at the cafeteria. Picked up what we needed and made a clean getaway.

Drove home. Vibration at speeds over ~50 km/h. Made a long detour to heat up wheels and brakes. Vibration gradually faded. Weather made detour interesting, but not in a good way.

Back home, decided to clear accumulated snow off the car before it had a chance to turn to ice. While doing so, observed neighbors in assorted RWD and FWD vehicles fail to climb the slope up to the parking garage. Offered to tow them. Too proud to accept towing (“no, really, we’re fine”), but not too proud to accept my directions & an occasional push.

Forgot to not set parking brake.

Walked over to some friends on the other side of the hill to play Runebound. Met snowplow on the way over. No use; snow falls faster than they can clear it.

Airport closed. Worried about K’s forthcoming trip to Denmark.

Sunday

Still snowing.

Installed shelves in new cupboard. Sorted tools and assorted car parts and stowed them in said cupboard. K very happy about this.

Estimate average depth of snow in garden at ~1 m.

Groundskeepers break out snow blowers to clear snowbanks created by plows.

Monday

No longer snowing.

Airport open. K off to Denmark.

Rear brakes frozen. Noticed a bump backing out of the garage; driveway covered with ~20 cm of packed snow and ice, creating a curb across the exit from the garage.

Off to the hospital for conchadiathermy. Vibration at speeds over ~70 km/h (see, it’s getting better). Road clear, so solved problem by alternately accelerating to ~80 km/h and braking hard down to ~40 km/h. Noticeable difference in traction between R163 and R159. Low sun in clear skies makes driving eastward very uncomfortable.

Surgery was quick but very unpleasant. The less said the better.

Drove home. Remembered to not set the parking brake. Watched neighbor in FWD car fail to get over curb and onto the driveway. Finally got out after much wheelspin. Should have approached at an angle.

Spent the rest of the day on the couch. Watched the entire first season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Ate chocolate chip ice cream.

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