Winter is a wonderful time. It makes most folks think of snow, warm coats, funny looking ski hats, and hot chocolate (or tea depending which side of the pond you were born). What it should make you think about is falling on the ice.
I've fallen down more times in the past two months than I've fallen in the last 15 years. Last month I fell on the street and literally did the Nestea plunge flat on my back on the hard iced over concrete. The only thing that broke my fall was my coworker's laptop that I had offered to carry home in my backpack (he'll never ask me to do that again).
I've also fallen on the cold frozen granite steps that lead down into the subway. The icing on the cake (get it! Icing!) from that experience was landing on the broken beer bottle that some bum had discarded at the end of the stairwell. I ended up getting glass in my shoe and had to remove both my shoes and socks so that I could get the shards out of my foot (how would you like to have been sitting next to me on the train for that little medical procedure?).
But the best so far was when I fell while walking to the grocery store near my flat. I tried to grab a light pole to keep from falling but it too was iced over. In a last ditch effort I flung my leg around the pole and slid down it until I ended up sitting on my butt in the middle of the busy sidewalk. One guy actually stopped and looked at me and snickered. I like to think he was considering stuffing a dollar bill in my…you get the picture.
I've decided now that the best way to confront my ineptness on the ice is to go to ice skating rinks and practice falling in a controlled environment. I've already been a couple of times this year to the ice skating rinks around town and I believe that it is helping hone my skills for navigating my way to/from the office each day. Don't get me wrong. I still fall occasionally. Come to think of it, I still fall a lot. Maybe if I wore a sequin-covered unitard while walking on this glacier that they call a city I would have more agility. Maybe…
-Chaz Michael Michaels aka The Moscow Correspondent