Bergen. Winter. Rain. Snow. Rain.
The rain could not melt the packed snow away. It could only turn it into the slickest ice.
I tried to balance in the wind, but the wind caught my coat and I felt myself being pushed along - no way to stop, nothing to hold on to.
I need ice cleats, I thought, as I finally reached the safety of cleared pavement, and my brief moment of panic was over.
I made it safely to the bus stop by our mall for my errand to the post office. I had just missed a bus, as luck would have it. As I waited for the next one, one senior citizen after another came to the stop, and soon they were discussing cleats. One was wearing the sports model, one that lets you jog in ice and snow. I listened to their discussion, noticed the brand name, noted the comment about size necessary, and noted which store sold them. I got all the information I needed to get ice cleats.
I kept company with one of the women since she too was going to the post office. We also waited for the return bus together, and a third woman joined us, telling us how she'd just slipped on the ice.
Back at the mall, I went straight to the shop that sells the cleats. I have a common shoe size and not only the store, but the factory was sold out of that size, I was told. But one customer had a pair in my size on lay-away. The store clerk called that customer, who decided not to buy them. As luck would have it! I now own a pair of ice cleats.