Near-miss

nbc29Hilda switched on Channel 29 News while the coffeemaker gurgled on the counter top. She didn’t watch much TV, but she would rather let Dave Rogers tell her what the weather would be than look it up on her computer. She assembled a three-egg omelette as the commercials droned on. She was not really paying attention, but she noticed that the commercial had been interrupted for breaking news.  Continue reading

Recovery

2018-dogwoodsThe Greenbrier neighborhood was awash with brilliant white and pink dogwoods. The sun filtered through the trees as Emily made her way to school. Hilda trailed her as they navigated the curving, narrow roads. Continue reading

Crash

2018-BRP springWith five kilometres to go, Emily broke from the peloton and sprinted for the finish line. Sylvia and Tashiqua stood up and pulled alongside her, blocking any moves by the riders in the field. Everyone knew what was happening. After the races last fall and the two this spring, Emily was becoming famous in women’s cycling, not only as the fresh new face on the circuit, but for her ability to sprint after gruelling hills. No one understood why a girl from Kansas could do that (except her mother, who did not grant interviews).  Continue reading

West Main Street

2018-I-81 in snowTwo weeks after the ambush at Aberdeen Proving Grounds, Joe, Jack and Hilda were driving slowly south on Interstate 81 down the Shenandoah Valley. The winter storm pounding the East Coast was less severe west of the Blue Ridge, so Joe decided to head west above Baltimore to Hagerstown and down the Shenandoah Valley. From the radio reports, they knew that the main I-95 corridor from Aberdeen south was impassable. At least the convoys of long-haul trucks on the “New England Expressway” between Atlanta and Boston helped the snowplows stay ahead of the falling snow. Continue reading

Greenbrier

IMG_20150217_095921“It’s just above freezing, Emily. I can drive you to school.” The kitchen was bright with the sunlight reflecting from the winter wonderland in the back yard.

“I’ll ride the long way around, Mom. It’s clear all the way, and there is plenty of room on Rio Road and the John Warner Parkway to avoid any frozen puddles.” Emily finished her breakfast and started clearing the table.  Continue reading

Seeking Safety

2018-Chrsitmas tree topper“I am so glad you agreed to stay through Christmas,” Linda Rathburn said, as Hilda handed her the angel topper for the Christmas tree. An early snowfall in mid-December had put everyone in a holiday mood. Linda climbed down and reached for her hot apple cider on the table.
“I have to admit, this has been a safer and friendlier place to wait than anywhere else. You and Joe have been wonderful.” Continue reading

Charlottesville

2018-UVA RotundaEmily carried her cleated racing shoes into the kitchen. She had her long-sleeved winter racing kit on, with a bright orange microfiber buff around her neck. Katharine motioned to the table and set out bacon and eggs. Emily put the bread in the toaster. Continue reading