Today was going to be day 5 of my 18/19 season, and it still was but not without starting rougher than it could’ve. The day began around the usual time for me at least. Wake up around 730, run some errands that needed doing, and be geared up for the mountain around 10. No need to shoot for first chair, that’s rarely a battle I fight, plus the snow conditions in the Cascades currently don’t require it.

I hopped into my trusty, but ailing, 2002 Xterra for a quick 30 minute ride to the mountain. This quick ride turned out to be the Xterra’s last ride up a road it’s been down many times before. You see the Xterra suffered from a stage 5 terminal transmission, and while I know it’s been close to death for a while I didn’t think it would be today.

Alas, it was. 17 miles into my 21 mile commute it started losing power, forcing me to the shoulder allowing other mountain-bound people in newer, shinier cars to fly past. Even suffering fatal wounds, the Xterra has always been a considerate daily-driver, and would never want to hold back others from accessing the surprisingly fun pre-season conditions we’re currently experiencing. It was there I knew it was over, my day done. The freshly applied coat of wax on my base never to see the snow it was meant for, and my future existence stuck on hold with AAA.

While coming to grips with this new reality, a glimmer of hope appeared. Mountain friends, and fellow riders, on the way up recognized my plight and stopped. Using our base cleaner and ptex-attled minds we pieced together a plan to get the fallen Xterra off the shoulder and up to a chain zone where it could await a tow truck, while I, its saddened owner, could take some runs to forget reality.

In the end I got to the mountain, that wax got its use, AAA picked up the phone and my faith in my humanity was restored. Although I’ll be sitting out the next few days, it will be okay. Another storm cycle will roll through this weekend, another vehicle will show itself and in the meantime I have awesome friends that I can count on. The karma points may have been cashed in today, but the season moves on.