Tag Archives: Vermonter

Not a Vermonter Yet

Today was full of lessons. Lessons that will make me a pretty solid Vermonter, someday.

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The last couple days were in the 50’s. It was a nice treat, although I am still wondering where Old Man Winter is hiding. The roads were muddy yesterday – everything unfreezing. Definitely a precursor to what spring might be like…my car went from blue to brown in one drive to work. It all froze up again last night.

This morning I went out to go to work and it was pouring. The ground was slippery. I decided to go to wrk the “long” way, also the flatter way up the mountain. When I approached the street, I went to break, but my breaks didn’t catch….I just kept going. “Guess I’ll just turn around over there.”

This moment, on the flat land, should have given me pause. I should have thought that sliding on flat ground might mean that going up a mountain called Densmore Hill, with an elevation of 1200+ feet, might not be the best idea. Now might be a good time to share that going up the “flatter” way one side of the road (coming down) drops off – it’s a ledge. usually there is a snow bank, but there hasn’t been much snow, so it was glare ice with no barrier to what I will just refer to as the “ravine.” That is a slight exaggeration…but if the car went down it wouldn’t just be a wheel over the edge, it would roll and need a wrecker to retrieve it.

So I went up. And I slid.

The first lesson I learned was that I knew how to drive in slippery conditions. I thank an old boyfriend who’d take me to a parking lot while he did donuts and slid all over when it snowed…and he made me drive sometimes. I think everyone should do this. I don’t even think about it, but the rear starts going to the right and I turn the wheel to the right. Does it stop you, no. But you hopefully get a little control.

The hill wasn’t too steep, but I was still sliding. A car was coming down on the “ravine” side, so I followed protocol and pulled over and was stopping to let them pass safely. I was stuck though. 4WD didn’t help, my wheels were spinning. The girl stopped and asked if I was okay and I said I was fine, but she insisted on waiting til I got going. I got into the side rut and got enough traction to go, so I told her to leave, but I’d get stuck spinning again second later.

Lesson 2: no matter how far you lean forward, you can’t make your car go. Uphill. On ice.

There was a driveway across the street from me, so I spun myself over there and finally got traction on her rocks. But I parked my car. My legs were jello. I slid all

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Hillsound Trail Crampon Ultra, available on Amazon (these are NOT what i was given)

the way up the driveway in my “boots.” Her 17-month old German Shepherd did sound like he wanted to kill me, but she opened the door while saying he’s friendly. He’s named after a gun type, I think, Ruger. He happily greeted me jumped up and licked my face. She was so nice and let me call my boss from the landline because there is no cell service on the mountain. Duh. So, she loaned me toe crampons for the walk (“hike”) so i didn’t die walking to her house. My boss also came down to assess the slippery road because she had to go to an appointment. I was wheezing and panting. So she carried my heavy bag up, so I didn’t slip and die. I think she didn’t want to have to pick me up or witness that mess.

We got to her house/the office and got to work. It poured buckets all day and I wasn’t really worried since it warmed up. Just all that rain on frozen ground was bad news for my commute. The drive home was a dream! But, I still took the long way home….I took the long way home.

#‎notavermonteryet‬ ‪#‎citygirl‬ #jellolegs #slipandslide

Work is Overrated

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A year ago yesterday I was laid off. earlier that day I had hung a plaque in my office; it said “The best is yet to come.” This was the second January in a row that my position was eliminated at the same company. I immediately took a “job” at a “startup” until they decided to screw me over and not pay me. It became clear to me that the universe was sending me a message – leave corporate America. For sure I needed to leave commercial real estate. But what would I do…I had been on this ladder for so long, I didn’t know how to get down.

Unemployment was new for me. Everyone who knows me knows that I was all but defined by my career. I lived to work. I lived FOR work. Even still, I decided I would really take some time to figure out what made me happy. I had zero clue what that was.

I knew I liked dogs. I had been fostering with Last Hope K9 since November 2014. Being unemployed allowed me to take dogs that had separation issues, or needed more attention or training. You might say that i turned all my energy into dogs, and you’d be right. Pretty much hid from figuring myself out. I mean, I helped 17 dogs find forever homes and made great friends, but I didn’t help myself at all.

I wanted to start Jerky Queen again. The only problem was that I (thought I) needed to be in a USDA certified location and when I started it the first time around, my day job funded it. Unemployment didn’t even pay my bills. I had people who wanted to invest, but they wanted too much. So that went to the back burner.

Speaking of which, i was brooooke by Fall. I needed to start figuring something out. I had been actively searching for work but the same issue came up…I needed the big paycheck to afford Boston, but I didn’t want the fancy, corporate job that came with it. I was totally willing to start over or from the bottom, but I couldn’t afford my lifestyle.

My bestie makes and sells soap. Really great soap that you can buy, btw. In an effort to get up to VT to visit her, and to also just help out, I was going to work the Apples & Crafts Fair with her. Columbus Day Weekend in Woodstock, VT…sign me up! Even though leaves hadn’t peaked yet, it was so beautiful! I fell in love with Vermont all over again. It was then that I decided I was going to make VT my home…I put the order out to the universe. I’d later learn that you need to be very specific with those orders! I forgot to say that was my 3-year plan. I added VT into my search criteria so I could see what kind of jobs were out there. By November my research would find a part-time job opportunity, and a shot-in-the-dark post to the list-serv would find me a place to rent and I moved……basically on a whim.

My year of unemployment is over. It looks like that part-time possibility was meant to be and I have another part-time job so I can catch up on bills. I am in the most charming town on the planet! Looks like that plaque was quite the omen after all.