A quick trip on December 9 to pay a surprise visit to my mother on her birthday to take her out for lunch. My father died in 1997 so there is just mom. Travel time is over three hours in bitter cold with the temperature sinking almost to minus thirty Celsius. I am sure my phone lied to me about the cold as it felt damn colder. The heater in my KIA struggled to keep me warm. All of the usual cold cliches applied.
You have to take your time in cold weather. Tires do not ride the way they usually do. They are stiff in cold weather. Brakes respond differently. You have to be on alert that your vehicle does not freeze up when you are driving. If it is minus twenty-five degrees Celsius outside and you are driving one hundred kilometres per hour your vehicle is experiencing quite the wind chill. I once had gas lines freeze up on me when driving a vehicle many years ago. Having car problems in the summer is an inconvenience. In the winter in a cold snap it can be a major problem.
I arrived and drove to the thrift store where my mother volunteers on Monday and Friday mornings. I thought I would surprise here there. The thrift store was closed. I did not know that apparently they close this time of year as they do not get a lot of donations prior to Christmas. I phoned my mother to make sure she was home. She answered and I wished her a happy birthday. I asked what her plans were. She told me some friends were going to take her out for lunch. No plan ever works perfectly. I did not tell her I was in town, I made an excuse that I had another call. It was 10:30am and I had lots of time to get to her place before anyone managed to take her anywhere.
Mom was happy with the visit. She changed her plans and we went out for lunch. It was so cold outside that the restaurant was barely warm inside. It was a good short visit. She drives me crazy at times. I am sure all parents do that to their kids. I would have stayed overnight except for the cold. This is the first year I have owned this car and I could not find the block heater cord. For those not familiar with block heaters, you plug your car in and the block heater keeps the engine warm making it easier to start in cold weather. If I stayed overnight and I did not have the car plugged in there was a good chance I might not be able to start it the next morning. I drove all the way home with the KIA keeping me just warm enough. Temperatures were a bit better where I reside.
The moral of the story is go visit your parents sometime.