Sunday, January 4, 2015

Red Flares

Red Flare at Elmira
Red Lights of an Accident
On HWY 95 by Elmira Schoolhouse
Traffic Down to One Lane
My Car Gathering More Snow in the Driveway
Barn Kitty Braves the Snow
And again it snows. A hay-truck hauling round bales slowly passes by my house, and I wonder if he's having trouble or if it's really that icy on the road.

Then flashing lights to the south appear. An ambulance from Sandpoint lumbers carefully toward Elmira. If there is an accident, the first-responders are responding with caution. The roads must be that icy.

I finish the dishes and notice that cars are stopping. My next chore is feeding the barn cat so I bundle up in my wool coat, scarf and rabbit fur bomber hat. I step into Todd's boots and trudge through the snow piling up once again.

Instead of the garage, I head to HWY 95. Elmira is lit up with a string of red road flares. The accident, hidden by lights, occurred in front of the Elmira School property. Many lights flash and I can see the reflective gear of responders.

Now there are two ambulances, two fire trucks and a slew of deputies. It's hard to judge the severity of an accident by the number of responders on the scene. Locals say that because the first-responders are volunteers who get paid for showing up, everyone shows up.

I watch a volunteer set up flares that glow red in the snow. Better that the community all shows up than not at all. If I needed rescuing, I'd prefer to be rescued here by Bonner and Boundary County residents. I remain hopeful that since no one is posting about the accident on the social media grapevine, that it is not serious.

My own car is getting dusted in, and Todd's shovel waits in a pile of snow for him to plow our drive once again. Each year we say we need a snow blower. Maybe one year we will get one. For now I hope that the cars on the road are safe, and I'm grateful Todd no longer has a long commute, especially in winter weather.

As I walk toward the garage, Bootsy greets me in the snow trail. Once in the garage I feed her, pour fresh water to replace her iced-over dish and I hold her to sing "kitty songs." Last month she let me pick her up and now she expects it.

Home, community and kindness. Even in the glare of accident flares we can practice what peace is made of.


  1. Wow. That's the perfect spot for your car to be... parked and being covered in snow. Icy roads aren't fun.

  2. I love your final thought of peace and friendship, Charli. It has been interesting to follow the growth of the relationship between you and Bootsy, just like any other relationship. I agree with Dawn that your car is in the best place - better than slip sliding on those dangerous roads. Stay safe. :)

    1. Thanks, Norah! I didn't think I'd grow to like a barn cat, but we have found ourselves in a relationship! =^-^= The car is so buried at the moment, it will remain. Todd had to use the truck this morning, but it has no driver's side window so it was a chilly drive!

  3. a bit to apposite tis one; just before Christmas we changed the car the kids us to a Mini. It was just off the forecourt and they did us a good deal. The Lawyer and the Beautician head north to her folks, giving it a run. It snows; they've never driven in snow. it is now a three wheeler and in intensive care. The mileage on the clock when the hit the bollard? 666. I'm not superstitious....

    1. Oh, no, Geoff! As long as only the mini got banged up and everyone else okay. Cars can get new wheels and bumpers. But that mileage--yikes! Maybe not superstitious but I'm sure your shop guys either chuckled or avoided working on your project!

  4. Oooh...the kind of day to stay hunkered down, safe and sound. Do hope nothing nasty happened out on the road there. What a lovely way to end this snow post... 'Home, Community, Kindness'. What a lovely sentiment and one that warms my heart with just the thought of it. Love sweet little Barn Kitty. Keep cosy my friend :-)

    1. Keeping cozy when the animals aren't requiring my assistance outside. :-D

  5. Very lucky that no one was hurt. Yesterday a semi truck from Calgary lost control on the road and hit a pickup truck head on. When the vehicles came to stop after the collision, the pickup was completely under the semi and it's driver pinned. And no one was killed! The angels are busy on this stretch of road. :-)