The City of Boston is in the midst renewing all the sidewalk wheelchair ramps in my neighborhood. These ramps seemed fine to me, but then again, I’m not a wheelchair ramp expert. I am, however, an expert at removing snow from the wheelchair ramp at the corner of my street, which city snow-removal contractors believe is the best place to deposit the stuff after each snow storm; it apparently has never occurred to them that people in wheelchairs aren’t likely to climb over the mountain of snow and ice they’ve put there. In any event, these late spring days, you may find any of a number of my neighborhood sidewalks closed to foot traffic, forcing you to share the street with frazzled rush-hour motorists. Fresh cement is everywhere, with orange warning cones and sometimes (but not always) other barriers to indicate to bleary-eyed pedestrians that the surface is new and very mushy. Two weeks ago, I took my kids to the school bus stop, and my son quite nearly stepped in fresh cement right in front of the cement guys. I was holding his hand at that particular moment, which saved the day!
However, I was not holding his hand a minute later when they boy’s mother came driving by en route to work, prompting my son to sprint to the street corner to yell “Bye Mom!” He didn’t get very far, of course. Wet cement tends to stop you in your tracks (unless you’re the Pink Panther). Luckily, our friendly cement guys were still present to yell at him (too late) and then fix the sidewalk (but not fix my son’s brand new sneakers).