That Snow Mountain…

, , , , , , , | Working | October 20, 2017

(My mother is an x-ray technician at a large hospital in Alabama, and it should be noted that she grew up in the Rocky Mountains of Nevada. One day, everyone starts rushing around frantically, and half the staff are heading home early. When she asks, she is told…)

Coworker #1: “I have to get up the mountain before the storm hits!”

Mom: “Mountain? What mountain? And what do you mean, ‘before the storm hits?’”

Coworker #1: “They just announced a snowstorm is going to hit Huntsville, starting in just a few hours. They’ve already cancelled schools and sent the kids home early. But a lot of us live on the other side of the mountain, so we need to get there before the storm hits, or we’ll never make it!”

Mom: “Again, what mountain? There are no mountains around here.”

(After a few more rounds of useless talk, and hearing the weather report for herself, she finally drags the coworker to a window.)

Mom: “What mountain?!”

Coworker #1: “Over there!”

Mom: *squints* “That’s not a mountain. That’s a hill. Maybe. More like a gentle rise.”

(Just then, another hospital employee comes up with a clipboard, looking rather harried.)

Nurse: “Okay, [Mom]… [Mom]…. Oh! Right. Your ride is [Coworker #2], and he’ll be there to pick you up at 5:30 tomorrow.”

Mom: “My ride? I drive myself, thanks. And my shift doesn’t start until 8:00, anyway.”

Nurse: “Oh, I know. But with all the snow, most people won’t be able to make it in. So, we’ve dropped to the bare essential staff, and everyone with four-wheel-drive is going around to pick up everybody else. You’re on [Coworker #2]’s route, and he’ll be there at 5:30.”

Mom: “You do realize I’m from Nevada, right? Rocky Mountains? Snow? My car has front-wheel drive. I’ll be here for my shift. You can take me off the list.”

Nurse: “But you need four-wheel-drive to drive in snow! What if you don’t make it? What if you crash? The ambulances won’t get to you in time!”

Mom: “We’re expecting ‘up to an inch.’ It’s not exactly a blizzard. I’ll be fine. Take my name off the list, because if someone comes pounding on my door at 5:30, my husband and I will not be pleased.”

(Mom left at her normal time and made it home, on the other side of the “mountain,” just fine. A little slow, due to traffic, but fine. The next morning, she likewise made it into work without incident, and was the only person who was well-rested, having slept her normal eight hours, instead of carpooling in hours early.)

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