Often, it is in the form of a mechanic neighbor with 4-wheel drive or some other like-minded but oddly fashioned guardian angel.
Roughly 12 feet of snow fell in Utah County on Tuesday. (OK, OK, 12 inches. But it felt like a lot more.) After shoveling my massive driveway, I grabbed my stuff for the gym, got in the car, backed airily out of my driveway and into the tire tracks on my cul-de-sac. All is well.
For about 50 yards. At which point the snow, which is roughly the height of the bottom of my low-maintenance, good-gas-mileage car, gets in the way. I get halfway to the already-plowed connector street when my tires (which were WAY less OK than the mechanic who changed my oil a couple weeks ago led me to believe) decided they were done.
I got out of my car. I kicked the snow out from around my tires and got back in. Nothing. I did it again. Nothing. I tried to back up. At first this was successful, but then I got stuck again. At this point my kindly neighbor, who had been shoveling his driveway, took pity on the clearly insane woman driving a station wagon and wearing shorts and came over to help. He pushed, he shoved, he shoveled, he even tried to drive it himself. Nothin' doin.'
At this point, he backed his overpriced, gas-guzzling SUV out of the driveway, hooked my car up to it and hauled me to the road.
Note to self: Good gas mileage is useless if my car is stuck in the snow.
I made it all the way to gym with only a little slippage. I went to turn into the parking lot and, as I'm begging my car to not slide, it does. Right into the median.
Hazards on. Stupid girl in shorts out, trying to dig out my car, trying not to cry, trying to figure out what I'm going to do now. A nice man with a broom sees my predicament and comes over, both remove snow and to push. Then a young man with a shovel and a comforting air of snowfidence comes over and starts to clear the area around my car and direct me on how to finagle the wheel. The car gets unstuck, then stuck again, then unstuck. Finally, the wheel turns, the momentum goes and I'm on the road.
I never got to thank them, but I hope they understood the sincere gratitude behind the wave as I drove away.