Thursday, December 18, 2008

I am Stooooopid, But Still Alive

I need to listen to my inner wuss a whole lot more.

And maybe even other people, like Erin, who stated quite plainly that I should not go out in all this....WEATHER.

See, the flakes got itty bitty. My road is a "secondary SDOT road" which means though it's not likely to be plowed, it's pretty highly used and not buried under a fresh sheet of snow. Which means my inner Calvinist-Work-Ethic convinced me that I should put in an appearance and make sure STUFF GOT DONE.

Please everyone, remind me I am the smallest of cogs in the system. Me not being there? No big whoop. But anyway...

I figured I'd go in, get payment requests ready, and leave before the sun (hahahahaha, yeah I know we haven't actually see the sun in a while but you know what I mean) went down and ta da! Everyone would be happy and life would keep moving briskly along.

Using the snow-driving skills I honed in Tahoe, I got there in one piece, no biggie. The parking lot was ALMOST EMPTY. This should have been a sign. It started to REALLY snow then and I was all, "tra la la, no worries, it'll go away soon." In the time it took me to open my passenger door and grab my bag, the entire seat was covered in flakes. I looked like Frosty the Overweight Snow Beast when I got to the door (did I mention I was wearing 3 layers of clothes as well as my pea coat?), and yet, instead of turning right around, I went in.

I think I was there about 45 minutes when I realized the snow flakes were NOT getting smaller. In fact, the rooves (roofs?) across the way were quite blanketed and looking THICK. It was at that point that I realized I was being reckless and not thinking of my mother again (this thought usually pops into my head just before I get into worlds of pain--bike accidents, sailing into storms, hiking across volcanic rock with no water, etc.). I was going to have to drive BACK in all that, what the hell was I thinking to venture out!

So, I dropped what I was doing, gathered up materials that I knew I could work on at home, and left as quickly as I could.

I only just made it in one piece. Mostly because the temperature started dropping pretty much as soon as I entered my work, it had to have. When I parked the thermostat read 33 degrees. When I skated to a stop about a mile from my apartment, hello 27 degrees! We were all driving on ice. All of a sudden I felt like I'd inadvertently driven into a bumper car arena...Especially as the guy behind me stopped centimeters from my bumper. The fact that I could see the "OH MY GOD" expression via my rear-view mirror makes me think possibly millimeters.

My favorite part was turning into the driveway of my building. I was only going 10 mph if that, mind...but yeah, goodbye traction and hello BRIGHT YELLOW PYLONS that divide the driveway and protect intercom/machine where you punch in the code to open the garage door! This is where I think instinct or past lives must have come into play.

I grew up in Southern California. We have no seasons, much less snow and ice. Yet, from the first time Andy took me out in his little 'rolla to "teach" me how to drive in the snow and ice of Tahoeland? I got it. If you asked me to explain what I would do if a car went into an uncontrollable spin, I could not tell to you how to fix it, but I will turn the wheel in the correct direction and touch the breaks in just the right way to counter and control the car in real life. This really is my one superpower.

I kept my back end from hitting the pylons and skated (did I mention the ice) under the garage door--and that bit was just dumb luck...I would have HIT the closed door if I hadn't pressed the remote opener with anticipation as I do every day coming home from work...there was NO stopping to wait for it.

Yep, white-knuckled and the adrenaline rush was nice...but I think I need a nap now.


tana said...

You kill me. "rooves" really killed me.

I am running out of my anti-depressant, it's waiting for me at the hospital pharmacy. I did not venture out today. That's right, I chose possible insanity over driving on the ice rink. Should I give you my phone number so you can call for a gut check next time? ;) It's so hard to be a good, hard worker bee. I know the feeling.

I am so, so, so glad that you are alive to tell us the funny story. I love your stories.

erin said...

Glad you made it home safe! I was quite horrified to witness the ice rink from the sidewalk... I can't imagine what driving in it was like. Yikes!