Here it is, folks – 2022! And none of our cars are flying yet (thank goodness). Are you sick of winter yet? I know I am. But the problem is, winter has barely started. Time to set our minds on keeping our equipment winterized and sharpen up our driving skills while continuing to tackle the treacherous roads. I run primarily in the mountainous areas of the Pacific Northwest, which means I see my fair share of chaining up to get over the passes. It’s really not that hard to do, but it’s also not very fun, either. This poem is about the “irony” of hanging iron, and that moment when you fight to get your chains on and finally get rolling, just to see the chain law has been lifted and they are no longer required. I know it sounds petty, but it deserves a complaint, nonetheless!
By Trevor Hardwick
I seen the sky was turning to a deep blue-gray,
The sunshine simply wasn’t coming out today.
Somewhere in the distance, I’d take on a mountain pass.
January’s bitter as the wind picks up,
The only thing that’s warm is in my coffee cup.
It’s splashing in the holder, I guess I’d better drink it fast.
I see a warning sign that’s flashing overhead,
“Chains are now required” just one mile ahead.
So I’ll be hangin’ iron, and I clearly ain’t the only one.
Over on the shoulder there’s a row of trucks,
Everybody’s thinkin’ just how much this sucks.
But you gotta get started, if you ever wanna get ‘er done.
I toss a set of singles on the outside drives,
And a couple on the trailer before I realize.
My bungees are all cracked, and missing half their hooks!
The snow is getting thicker as I kneel in slush,
Daylight slips away and now I’m feeling rushed.
If anyone was wondering, this is how pathetic looks.
I fixed a couple bungee cords to get me by,
It’s just a few more miles to the other side.
I tied a few together, and my improvising did the trick.
Warmer thoughts of summer start to flood my mind,
A barbecue and swimmin’ pool would suit me fine.
My feet begin to slip, reminding me it’s frikkin’ slick!
Just about the time I get my chains snugged up,
I’m blasted by the spray from a passing truck.
I try to grin and bear it, but I can’t even bear to grin.
I hop up in the cab and lock the “diff-lock” in,
Dropped her down in gear and gave this rig a spin.
I start to get ‘er going, when I see that flashing sign again.
No more chain restrictions as the roads are bare and wet,
All that time was wasted and I ain’t done yet.
If patience is a virtue, I’d say my virtue’s wearing thin.
I clunk along the slow lane with my flashers on,
Chewing on the asphalt because the snow is gone.
I have been more bothered, but I can’t remember when.
So, back onto the shoulder in a row of trucks,
Where everyone is thinkin’ just how much this sucks.
I gotta pull this iron, and drop these chains upon the ground.
I’ll be singing praises when I find that sun,
And I’ll be pretty happy when this season’s done.
But this was my reminder, winter’s comin’ back around.