January 8, 2016

Wintery Days and a Trip to Burlington

We had a cold snap at the beginning of this week. It was negative 16 one night--you forget how cold that is from winter to winter. I went outside to grab the mail, which is only about ten feet from the front door, in my flipflops and as soon as I stepped outside I knew it had been a very bad decision. 16 below is a touch too cold for flipflops. 

My second amaryllis is blooming. I love the contrast amaryllis give to the snowy outside. Sure it is cold outside, but inside, it is warm enough for this spectacular flower to bloom. 

The snowy road by the school

Farms and fields in Brushton. 

We had to go to Burlington for an appointment for Lillian. Strep three times in six weeks with a suspected fourth at the moment, we wanted to figure out if there was anything else going on. Sometime Lyme's disease, untreated, can cause kids to get recurrent strep. So I wanted to be sure her Lyme's had been irradicated. After reviewing everything, the doctors decided it would be almost impossible for her to have Lyme's right now, due to the blood work she had done. The conclusion is that it is just bad luck that she keeps having strep. Which is good news. Lyme's can be a beast to get under control if it has been raging along untreated. 

So we enjoyed our pretty, snowy day with all the gorgeous sunshine. 

Icy, patchy snow

Just before Ellenburg, every tree was icy and sparkly, It is really hard to take a good picture of sparkle. 

But I tried.

Marsh grasses and ice on Lake Champlain.

Crossing over into Vermont. I take crooked pictures. 

An old Canadian fort or one protecting us from invading Canadians. Not sure which. In Rouses Point, Canada, New York, and Vermont all come to a point. 

Crazy ice people. Doesn't the ice look a little suspicious to you? 

A train crossing the lake.

I dig crooked pictures.

For a big exciting time in Burlington, we went to Goodwill. (Yes, we do know how to have a good time.) And then the hospital. That was it. In our defense, we only had a hour or so before Lily's appointment. An hour doesn't really give you time to spread yourself in Church Street or go sightseeing. It is a 2 and a half hour drive, so once her appointment was done at 5:15, it was straight home again to get her in bed.

Well not straight home. When we were a little way from Malone (almost home) the police shut down Route 11 (the main road in these parts) and directed us to Burke. Burke is a town I haven't been in very much, so I didn't know where I was going. After a lot of convolutions and icy back roads, we eventually came back to 11. In my infinite wisdom, I didn't recognize 11 and thought the lights of Canada were the lights of Malone. I crossed 11, ignored the confused looks from the traffic cops, and attempted to go to Canada. At the barricaded road with a BORDER CROSSING CLOSED sign, I rethought my strategy and twisted and turned back to the police directing traffic, and meekly turned on to 11. Finally we got to Malone, where there was a giant tractor going through town at 10 miles an hour. Everyone was being shy about passing him in town, so there was quite a line. 

It was a longer trip home than I expected. 

I found out yesterday that Route 11 was closed because of a fatal accident. A mother from Malone was killed. Her poor little dears. When I was sitting at the Children's Hospital in Burlington, I saw a chic urban mother come out of the doctor's office area with a baby in a stroller. As she left the office hurriedly and turned to the elevators, I saw her face. She was trying really hard not to cry--wiping her eyes and looking upwards. My heart just ached for her. And I wondered what she had just learned about her wee baby in that doctor's office that was so heartbreaking. 

It made me think of all the little or big heartbreaks that happen so close to us, but not to us. For that mother, and for the little girl whose mother died, that first Wednesday in January will never be forgotten. But to us it was just another day. 

It makes me want to be more patient and generous to strangers and enjoy today and my non-breaking heart a lot more.

It's a good day, today.

I fully intend to spend it in Canada with Tori, puttering around IKEA and Parliment Hill. Enjoy your weekend!  

1 comment:

Geri Douglas said...

always sad to think of a child and a mother dying or anyone. Life is precious! Love your Amaryllis, Scott wanted to name our first child Amaryllis, Connie said she was glad I had the say in that. Pretty but I think she would have been called Amy which I had no objection too.