Devoted Spouse and I spent last weekend in West Virginia visiting a school chum of his. I’d always heard of the “hills” of West Virginia and now I have experienced them first hand. Hills — almost straight-up hills. Our friend lives up one of these hills and his house is situated such that you must walk down steps in his front yard to get to his front door and I don’t even want to describe the hill associated with his driveway. Suffice to say I’d be a bit testy trying to maneuver my car into the driveway on a cold snowy day. It is so steep one runs the risk of entering the driveway in one county and ending up in the next county in the blink of an eye. We parked on the street. That scared me, too. Streets in this neck of the woods are narrow and parking one’s car on the street leaves little wiggle room for other cars to pass. Assuming, of course, that they don’t just plow right into you since there is a good chance they’re barreling down the hill without brakes. Yes, our friend lives on the equivalent of a runaway truck ramp; all he needs is the gravel and sand. I think you get the picture.
So, Bob, the hill-dweller, was a most hospitable host – he took very good care of us. He even wondered why we hadn’t brought along EmmaLou the Golden Destroyer. I thought about bringing her but she’s not good with change and I thought it might upset her system too much to stay in such unfamiliar surroundings. I think it was the right decision, especially given the situation with the hills. I can’t imagine taking her for a walk — oh I could get down at least part of the hill, but there was no way short of an Act of God that I would have managed the return trip uphill. Not even strong EmmaLou could have pulled me up that 187,563 percent grade road; not without oxygen at the very least. I had visions of getting down the hill only to call Devoted Spouse on the cell requesting he drive down and rescue me. Anything to keep from having to traverse the hill.
So what did I learn this weekend? I wasn’t built to stand in a 45 degree lean. I’m a level ground kinda gal. I’m scratching West Virginia off the retirement-home list.