Saturday, December 3, 2011


They say timing is everything. In this case, "they" are right.

It was going to be a late night at work. This meant that when I headed north from my New Richmond drop on my way to Spooner, it was already dark. The snow that began to fall just as I walked into the Spooner drop meant it would wind up being over another two hours until I made it home, making for a 15-hour day with an 8-hour turnaround until I needed to be out the door for an early pick the next morning. Not that I was complaining. I enjoy driving itself, and long runs make for bigger paychecks.

It was what struck me on the way that made the night memorable.

I was taking the road through Star Prairie north to hook up to Hwy. 8 when it got interesting. It turned into a rollercoaster. Up and down in short steep hills, lots of turns, very little visibility, and I was attracting a bit of a following. My speed was decreasing the longer I was on this road. I just couldn't see past the top of the next hill. I knew there wasn't another car coming by the lack of a glow, but I couldn't tell if there might be deer moving or a curve just past the crest. Suddenly 30 mph seemed risky. As soon as a straight stretch opened up, I got passed, which was fine. I decided to pick up a bit and follow the car now ahead of me. It worked for a bit, but he really was more determined to move ahead than I was, and his taillights soon left my view.

Just about as this whole rollercoaster was ending, there was an interesting sign along the road. It warned of steep hills and limited visibility.

Gee, ya think? You couldn't put up this sign ten miles back? I mean, if we haven't figured it out by now....

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