We Atlantans are debilitated by snow and ice, it’s not something worth making fun of us for, or blaming the city, I mean we have very little reason to be so prepared, once every 3 or 5 or 10 years a major winter event shuts down the city for a day or 2. so it goes. In fact, since the great Snowpacalypse of 2011, salt and sand has sat by the highways coming in and out of town, some salt and sand was spread ahead of the snow that started around noon yesterday but it did little good when, with one motion every Atlantan got up from their desks and headed for their cars. It’s a shame fewer thought to just begin the commute with a walk to Marta like my friend S. I, looking out at Peachtree St. as co-workers rushed to join the herd was extremely glad I had not driven that morning and turned down N’s offer to pick me up (it gave me a headache to think of him backtracking those few blocks to reach me), still, I thought he’d beat me home…
To be fair, Marta wasn’t without its hitches at first, it seems there was some panic (“can we run trains when this cold white stuff is in the air??!” actually: a fire on the tracks at Five Points) but these were resolved and a mere 40 minutes after I left work, I was getting off at King Memorial, having decided this was my chance for a nice cold walk through the falling snow.
Oakland Cemetery was beautiful. Perhaps because the traffic of Memorial was at such a standstill only the occasional whoosh of the Marta train infiltrated the quiet of that space where the pattering of tiny flakes led me into a meditative state until I started to get too cold. The other people I encountered in the cemetery seemed of the same mind, one woman walking back and forth with her dog, a man, obviously also detouring on the way home like me, with his iPhone out to photograph the white stuff, and two primitive snowmen on a granite wall, built with the first flakes that fell.
I got home, after my chosen walk, in an hour and 40 minutes. It took N more than 3 hours to drive just across town (no highways, all roads were parking lots though), but that is nothing compared to others we’ve heard who abandoned their cars (the ice began to form soon enough despite all the traffic) and walked miles the rest of the way home, folks who would’ve done better to walk from the start rather than spend 7 or 8 or 10 hours in their car at the start—but WHO KNEW?! I can’t claim prescience, i just don’t like traffic. So, the lesson? everyone should use alternative transportation all the time! (it’s worth dreaming right?)
btw – Marta is running today, but roads are sheets of ice and will remain such until tomorrow most likely.