Jack’s Walk

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We had quite a bit of snow last week, making walking difficult and a bit treacherous. The sidewalks are full of tramped down snow, which in places has turned to sheet ice forcing me to walk/shuffle slowly and carefully. Last year I bought cleats for my boots to make waking on ice safer, but they do not make me safer because you need to high step with each step and then forcefully plant your foot. You need to march in the damned things, and if you don’t pick your foot up high enough, they ‘catch’ and can propel you face down quite suddenly and forcefully. Learning this was an unpleasant experience and caused my worst fall of last year. Besides which, I looked like I was from the Ministry of Silly Walks when I used them, so I don’t use them anymore. Instead, I’ve started walking on the road, which has its own risks, but Jack and I both wear flashing lights so we can be seen. There isn’t much traffic in our neighbourhood, especially at night, so overall I think it’s the safest option. It confuses Jack a bit, though. I’ve always made a big deal about staying away from the road, and Jack won’t step onto the street until I tell him it’s OK, so he’s been staying on the sidewalk, but he continually watches me, wondering where he’s supposed to be and I have to keep telling him to stay where he is. Last night was better. Jack is a thinking dog and he’s figuring it out. We’re supposed to have a bit of a melt over the next few days, and I’m hoping all the snow and ice will vanish. Sometimes a melt can turn snow into ice if it isn’t warm enough or long enough. Today the temp is 3°c, and by Thursday, it’s supposed to climb to 8°c, and if it gets there, we’ll be good to walk on the sidewalk again – at least until the next snowfall or ice storm.


  1. johnson catman says

    I don’t have much experience walking on ice, but would something like golf cleats work better than those ice cleats? Or maybe track shoes with spikes? I am not offering advice, just asking because I honestly don’t know.

  2. lumipuna says

    I just began using cleats last winter, and found that they make ice walking somewhat safer, but certainly not easier. It’s really like having to stomp a bug on every step. And then you have to frequently make situation estimates on whether it’s better to have the cleats on or off. When it’s off, you have to remember to carry the thing around in some bag (and it’s muddy). To put the cleats on, you need some place where to sit, and probably for taking them off too, if you’re somewhat old and stiff.

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