Thursday, Mar. 11, 2004
Dear Diary:

Our snowmobile does not like me. The feeling is mutual.

Okay, I'll admit that I have been ambivalent about snowmobiles from the get go, but in the past I have had a fairly amicable relationship with our other snowmobiles. We have to have at least one because we live a quarter mile uphill and when winter comes our road is just too twisty and steep to drive up safely.

Mostly, it's the spousal unit who has used our snowmobiles past and present. I don't care for the noise and unless the weather is unspeakably bad I enjoy the walk to and from our home in the winter. However, when something heavy has to be lugged up here, such as, say, our groceries, the machine is a lifesaver.

I have never had a problem with our other snowmobiles but the current one just won't start for me. The spousal unit gives the prime a full tugs, pulls the starter cord and with a baaaa-ROOOOOM, rum, rum, rum, rum he's off and running in a spray of snow. Me, I pull the prime a couple of times and there's a ba-room, rum, ru--, r-- and the machine conks out.

There have been accusations that I flood the snowmobile but this is a canard because I have shown him that I don't prime it anymore than he does. I have decided that the snowmobile does not like me. It's one of those unfortunate machine-woman personality clashes that happen from time to time.

Cunningly, I have managed to get around this sad fact this winter by organizing my shopping around times the spousal unit would be around to ferry the groceries. However, today that was not possible. Today I Had To Face The Snowmobile.

After I finished running errands and shopping this morning I drove up to where we keep the snowmobile parked and strode purposefully to it, filling the wagon with the groceries I'd bought.

You can't let a snowmobile smell your fear. Once they sense that, it's all over.

Because the weather is so warm, I gave the prime a mere two tugs, pulled the starter cord and with a ba-ROOM, rum, ru--, r-- the machine conked out. Fine. I pulled the starter cord again. Ba-ROOOOOOM, rum, rum, rum, ru--, ru-- r-- ... again, it conked out, but this time it ran a tad longer.

Taunting me.

Mocking me.

I wanted to kick it. I wanted to blue the air with curses, but I didn't. I couldn't give the snowmobile the satisfaction of knowing it had gotten on my very last nerve.

I told myself I would give it one final tug and if the freaking machine wouldn't start then I would carry the frozen stuff and perishables up to the house by hand and leave the rest in the wagon for the spousal unit to run up. Oh, sure, raccoons or stray dogs might stumble upon it and gobble or tear up our week's worth of fresh food, but even you know what? I was beyond caring.

One final angry tug on the starter cord and to my amazement not only did the engine turn over, but it began to rum, rum, rum, rum. We were good to go! Joyously I gunned it and raced up the hill, triumphantly turning in the yard with a flourish. I turned off the machine and walked back to the wagon and ...

When I had gunned it and raced it up the road home, the track that runs under the snowmobile and powers it threw a buttload of corn snow into the wagon behind it. A buttload. All my groceries were coated with several inches of fresh, hard, corn kernel-sized pellets of snow.

Oh yes, the snowmobile had started. Oh yes, I thought I had bent it to my will.

But even you know what? Right to the end, the freakin' machine was giving me 'tude.

I hate this machine.

--Marn

Mileage on the Marnometer: 222.83 miles. Ten percent there rubber duck.Ten percent there rubber duck.
Oh man. This is going to be hard
Goal for 2004: 1,000 miles - 1609 kilometers

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