Thursday, January 3, 2008

Chains and we're off!

Jan 3, 1030 GMT

I have never used tire chains before, though I get the idea behind their application and use. Tires have gotten better over the years, roads are better, and I don't live in a place where I'd need them.

But, today, it was either figure out the chains, or be stuck inside all day. While being inside to read and drink hot stuff all day isn't a bad notion, we ought to make the most of our time here, even if it is a lot colder (and, at the moment, snowier) than we expected. There are vinyards to see, cappucino to drink, and olive oil to sample.

So, Mark and I drove down the driveway, to test the conditions for driving back up (and, by extension, the surrounding dirt roads). We barely got past 100 feet when the tires began to spin and our progress halted. On with the chains! It had been years since Mark had used them, and then only the kind you had to drive over to install (as he recalls, he may have used them at Dartmouth in the 60s, and remembers using them with Dickie, which was a positive swear-fest). These are a more contemporary type, which wrap around top and bottom. After a few minutes' futzing, we were able to sort it out. It made driving back up the driveway not too bad, almost no slip.

As I compose this, we are on our way into Radda, first to an Internet café, then on to other things.

Sent from my iPhone.

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