It's funny how you don't appreciate things in life until you don't have them anymore. I learned this lesson once more this morning.
Living in the second driest state, one really doesn't have to deal with rain very often. A few "real" storms a year, a couple of thundershowers on summer afternoons- no big deal. What does it matter if your windshield wipers only work sometimes??
My windshield wipers used to worked a little. You would get a good "wipe" about every two-three minutes- if you put the setting on high speed and immediately turned it back off after one stroke. If you went two strokes- you chanced to over heat the motor and the blade would stick in some awkward position on the windshield. This is not only embarrassing, but also signals to any Highway Patrol that you do not have working windshield wipers.
If the wipers are stuck mid-stroke, sometimes hitting a pothole will jar the truck enough to release the blades and they'll finish the stroke. Sometimes not. This morning however, they stuck on the first pass and stayed that way.
This morning it rained, and rained quite hard for that matter. Add to that the mornings are getting darker- it was quite dark at 5:30 this morning. My truck's "real" headlights decided also not to work anymore. Fortunately, the truck is wired for daytime lights. Unfortunately, they only light up to about half illumination and point more forward then on the road. It keeps the cops off your back, but doesn't help much when you are driving on a dark road.
The whole situation- the dark, no lights, windshield blurred- all reminded me of driving in the tulle fog in the Central Valley in California. I fixed on the car ahead of me and followed the lights.
I'll get it all fixed soon enough. We still have about 4 months of dark mornings and plenty of rain and snow storms coming up. I can't fake it through all of that. But the important thing that happened is:
Through the anxious moments, the cursing of the truck's mechanical challenges and the rhythmic sound of the lane edge "sleepy driver" alert groves- I really took time to appreciate the finer things in life such as headlights, windshield wipers, and daylight savings time.